Press Release – 14/07/21
On 14th July 2021, Amina Masood Janjua, Chairperson Defense of Human Rights, had a successful meeting with Prime Minister Imran Khan in which Human Rights Minister Shireen Mazari and Prime Minister Special Assistant were also present. The meeting focused on the illegal practice of enforced disappearances and human rights violations in the country.
During the meeting, Amina Masood Janjua presented a list to Imran Khan in the form of a book, which contained the names of all the missing persons registered with Defense of Human Rights, along with the research book of Defense of Human Rights namely “Grief Untold“.
Amina Masood Janjua said that by July of 2021, 2700 cases of enforced disappearance have been registered with DHR, out of which 483 have been released, 203 have been traced and 77 people have died and 1354 cases are still disappeared with no information is given and no whereabouts are known about them. The Disappeared include 336 from Punjab, 778 from Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, 111 from Sindh, 72 from Balochistan, 23 from Azad Jammu and Kashmir, and 49 from the capital territory Islamabad.
The highlights of the meeting between Ms. Amina Masood Janjua, Shireen Mazari, and Prime Minister Imran Khan are as follows:
- Amina Janjua emphasized on the disappearance of her husband, Masood Janjua, who has been missing for the past 16 years. Imran Khan said that he is well aware of her heroic struggle and had been participating in sit-ins and demonstrations organized by Defence of Human Rights Pakistan, and further gave her reassurance about raising his voice against enforced disappearances just like he raised his voice for Dr. Afi Siddiqui.
- Amina Janjua talked about the ineffectiveness of the Commission of Inquiry on Enforced Disappearances. The Commission has been working since 2011 but has not achieved any significant success. Thousands of cases have been sent to the Commission but most of them fail to get any proper trial or hearing even after the production order has been issued.
- The Prime Minister was informed about the sit-in of 140 families in Peshawar that has been going on for a month but no government official has taken any action nor has there been any hearing to date. The Prime Minister called the Chief Minister of KPK and asked him to pay heed to the problems of the aggrieved families.
- Amina Janjua further briefed the Prime Minister about the position of Pakistan in terms of human rights records. “In the Universal Periodic Review next year, 194 countries will inquire Pakistan about the violation of various human rights records; the inability of Pakistan to ratify the Convention against Enforced Disappearance and the delay in passing the latest Criminal Laws will also be questioned.”, Amina explained
- Moreover, Amina Janjua congratulated the Prime Minister on introducing the latest Criminal Laws (Amendment) Act 2021 on the prevention of enforced disappearances but showed concerns about the bill not being approved yet. Shireen Mazari further added that the bill is nowhere to be found now, although the Prime Minister has already given his clearance on the bill. It was further requested that when the bill is presented for discussion in the Parliamentary Committee, Amina Masood Janjua and other human rights activists should also be invited to be a part of the discussion.
- Prime Minister Imran Khan was further informed about the cases registered in Islamabad High Court that had a good standing but are still stuck. Amina Janjua further demanded to rehabilitate and compensate the families of the disappeared.
- Prime Minister Imran Khan was apprised of the problems regarding the internment centers. He reassured that this problem will be resolved after the missing people have been traced.
- Lastly, it was demanded that the case of Zakhail and Sadiq Amin and all the other recent cases that are currently missing, be resolved immediately.
Amina Janjua considered this long-awaited meeting a success. She believes that Imran Khan is serving the country with true sincerity and his sincere efforts will surely bring back Masood Janjua, along with all the other enforced disappeared victims.
Media Team, Defence of Human Rights Pakistan