Misadministration of justice in Pakistan and its consequences

Hazrat Ali (A.S.) has rightly pointed out that, “An un-Islamic government may last for a while, but tyranny cannot be endured at all.” The administration of justice is inevitable for any society to survive and prosper in the long run. During the World War-II when the Germans were bombing London, Prime Minister Winston Churchill was briefed on the casualties and potential economic collapse. He asked, “Are the courts functioning?” When told that justice was being dispensed as usual, he replied, “Thank God, if the courts are working, nothing can go wrong.” Indeed, all great leaders know that justice in a society is like the soul in a body.
The Quaid-i-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah reflected the same confidence on the disposal of justice being the guarantor of the prosperity of the state. He said during the Presidential Address to the Constitutional Assembly of Pakistan on 11th Aug 1947, that “My guiding principle will be justice and complete impartiality, and I am sure that with your support, and cooperation, I can look forward to Pakistan becoming one of the greatest nations of the world.”
Unfortunately, after more than 73 years of her independence, Pakistan could not succeed to become a welfare state in true sense. The system of administration of justice in the country is at its worst. A country whose ancestors sacrificed their blood and lost properties for the greater cause of building a just society turned into a nightmare for the unprivileged segment of the society.
One must take pity on Jinnah’s dream being crushed under the lust of the elite class who has penetrated deep into the system of state that a so called honest and just Prime Minister has become a puppet at the hands of powerful people pulling the strings. This so-called honest Prime Minister is so much blinded by the comforts of the Prime Minister house that he probably couldn’t even know about the 45-year-old rickshaw driver in Karachi who committed suicide in February this year by self-immolation due to poverty. Although, it is not the only suicide and Prime Minister Imran Khan can’t be declared the sole responsible for this incident, as the chief Minister of Sindh was equally responsible, but the Prime Minister seems to be no different than those in past who had mastered the art of slogans to reach the power corridors.
In Pakistan, judicature or the administration of justice is carried out through five components: (i) Police (ii) prosecution (iii) courts (iv) prisons and (v) corrections. Loopholes and weaknesses in all five components exist in the Criminal Justice System of Pakistan. Almost everyone knows about the extraordinary stories of corruption and maltreatment of police whether it be the illegitimate arrest, the arrest of wrong people based on application of poor investigative tools or the flagrant abuse of the law by arresting the relatives of an accused criminal. By no means should the relatives of an accused be arrested unless a very strong proof of accompliceship isn’t present.
The poor prosecution in Pakistan not only makes the conviction rate lesser but is also responsible for the imprisonment of innocent people. The history of justice system will never be able to erase the macule of injustice on its face when two brothers Ghulam Serwar and Ghulam Qadir had already been hanged a year before the Supreme Court overturned their convictions for murder in 2016 on the grounds that didn’t have irrefutable evidence.
The dismal picture of misadministration of justice in the country is not only limited to the police, prosecution and courts, rather it extends to the prisons and corrections. The appalling condition of the prisons and corrections in Pakistan may give us cold shivers. According to the HRCP, as of 2017, there were 82,591 prisoners against a capacity of 45,210. The story doesn’t just end here rather a report submitted in the Supreme Court in 2019 revealed that the number of under-trial prisoners was higher than convicted prisoners.
The worst living conditions in the prisons and corrections as well as the maltreatment meted out to those who had possibly committed any trivial crime might result into disastrous mental health conditions. Furthermore, the accused juvenile offenders are also kept in adult prisons where criminals of all sorts are imprisoned, therefore, the potential possibility of not so dangerous kids turning into beasts, is so high.
Recently, much has been talked about the 6th generation warfare and the most devastating consequences of it, but less has been discussed about the possible vulnerability of a growing 68% youth-bulge which has been left at the mercy of a system where injustice of all sorts is the norm of the day. This youth isn’t just a source of power and strength for the country but also a ticking time bomb if left at the mercy of the propaganda of our enemies.
The enemy would pollute their minds and exploit them against the state if the state failed to protect the weaker segments of the society. The enemy will use them for their own interests if the state fails to guard the merit system it has miserably failed to do so far. If the sons of feudal lords are left scot free after committing a murder and the justice system does injustice by providing the criminals an opportunity to escape the punishment by allowing them to pressurize the victims, if the citizens burn themselves and commit suicide owing to the poverty and extreme inflation and due to the state’s inability to provide relief then we wouldn’t even need enemies to destroy us because, we are already doing it the best way.
Let’s strive for a just society by standing against injustice even if it hurts our closer acquaintances. Let’s be one voice for meritocracy even if one of our siblings suffers as a result. Let’s consider the law of the land; our constitution as a sacred piece and protect its sanctity by first obeying it and then compelling others to respect it. Let’s stand against the corruption which is one of the worst things causing injustice to blossom. Let’s never tolerate the copy culture in our educational institutions which has left a rotten system of producing lowbrows and job seekers.
Encouraging copy culture means doing a disservice to the nation as well as doing the worst injustice to those who literally put their best and work hard. Let’s leave a just and prosperous society for our generations which we yearned to see. Let’s be a true Islamic society by protecting the minorities as a responsibility which Allah has laid upon us.

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