PHILIPPINES: Absence of protection thrives for decades

By Danilo Reyes  I can still remember images of twenty years ago when my mother (now a retired public school teacher) and I travelled on a night bus from our hometown to Cotabato City. In those days our hometown was about six to seven hours away. The travel time would be shorter now as the […]

PAKISTAN: One year after the floods-women continue their struggle to rebuild their lives & livelihoods

FOR PUBLICATION  AHRC-ART-046-2011  August 24, 2011 An Article by the Asian Human Rights Commission PAKISTAN: One year after the floods-women continue their struggle to rebuild their lives & livelihoods By Bushra Khaliq  One year ago during the months of July and August the floodwaters that ravaged the southern parts of Pakistan have long receded. Though […]

SRI LANKA: Photos of Razeek’s exhumation

A collection of photos from activists in Sri Lanka published by the Asian Human Rights Commission The AHRC has received the following photos from the exhumation of disappeared human rights activist Mr. Pattini Razeek in Sri Lanka from a local source. Please also read our earlier statement on the case: SRI LANKA: The body of […]

INDIA: Supreme Court – ‘Salwa Judum’ is unconstitutional

Article | India | 21-07-2011

“People do not take arms without reason” — Supreme Court The recent judgment of the Supreme Court of India in Dr. Nandini Sundar and others Vs State of Chhattisgarh and Union Government indicates that the country’s judicial system is alive, and a citizen can hope for justice from it. In the decision rendered on 5 July 2011, […]

ASIA: The Societal Importance of the elimination of torture and ill treatment in the South Asian context

A summary of a presentation made to the Vigil India Movement, Bangalore by the Asian Human Rights Commission Each generation has its own challenges. Not long ago the great challenge was to dispel the foreign invader and to claim our land as our own. Today we face a far different challenge, which is, to become […]

PAKISTAN: Karachi killings – government combating militancy with state sponsored militancy

Baseer Naweed Karachi, the capital of Sindh, remains a hotspot of continuous arms clashes between different political and religious parties where the government has still not been able to use rational methods to control the fighting. The conflict between different armed groups is a clear demonstration of the collapse of the rule of law. The […]

SRI LANKA: Glaucon’s story about the ring of invisibility and J.R. Jawardene’s legacy

Basil Fernando  In Plato’s Republic Glaucon narrates a story about a ring of invisibility.  The man who found the ring used his power to enter the palace, rape the queen, kill the king and to take over the throne. ‘They’d have the scope I’m talking about especially if they acquired the kind of power which, […]

SRI LANKA: Mass protest against murders of seven women in Kahawatte

According to reports yesterday, July 5, 2011, about 2,000 persons from the Kahawatte area participated in a protest demanding the removal of the police working in the area. The reason behind this protest is the inability of the police to effectively investigate the murders of seven women who were killed in separate incidents. The people […]

SRI LANKA: The challenge for the new IGP is to win the cooperation of his ASPs

Basil Fernando  The new Inspector General of Police, N.K Illangakoon, in his first public statement has admitted that there are problems in the policing system of Sri Lanka. He mentioned that the policing system has been distanced from the people. The IGP’s statement should be an occasion to reflect on another, more disconcerting problem for […]

SRI LANKA: Examining the reasons for the absence of outrage against forced disappearances

Basil Fernando In my earlier short essay titled Replacing investigations with gossip, I tried to point to the absence of outrage against forced disappearances in Sri Lanka, which I ended by saying that there must be some cultural for such an attitude. In this second short essay I venture to look into what that cultural root […]

SRI LANKA: Serious deficit of the rule of law due to actions of men most learned in the law

Keynote address delivered at the Annual General Meeting (AGM) of the Citizens Movement for Good Governance (CIMOGG) — June 29 2011 by Kishali Pinto-Jayawardena, Attorney at Law, Media Columnist and Author.  Introductory Comments Mr Chair, members of CIMOGG and friends, when Dr A.C. Visvalingam initially spoke to me in regard to delivering the keynote address […]

SRI LANKA: Replacing investigations with gossip

The attempt to trivialize the campaign on the disappearance of Prageeth Ekneliagoda Basil Fernando There are discussions about Prageeth Eknaliagoda’s abduction and disappearance that go something like this: Was he a journalist or was he not a journalist? Was he a great journalist or was he a lesser journalist? Was he abducted and made to […]

PAKISTAN: What is the score in Balochistan?

Baseer Naweed After the killing of Professor Saba Dashtyari, a renowned scholar of Balochistan, a question commonly asked by the people is: What is the latest score in Balochistan? The killings, whether extrajudicial or through target killings, have become so common that not one day passes when one or two bullet riddled bodies are not […]

PAKISTAN: The appeasement policy — government misses the initiative of taking the armed forces to task

Baseer Naweed  The government of Pakistan — the so called legacy of Bhuttoism — has once again come out in support of our armed forces in an attempt to present them as brave and innocent. The government is reluctant to initiate an independent inquiry commission in the incidents of Abbottabad and Mehran Naval base and […]

PAKISTAN: Acid attacks — five men and seven women attacked during the first four months of 2011

Naghma Iqtidar Acid throwing is a form of violence in which a perpetrator attacks his victim by throwing acid on his or her body. The attack may result in damaging the skin tissues, often exposing and sometimes dissolving the bones. Permanent scarring of the face and body, and blindness are also the consequences of these […]

WORLD: A new Chief Justice for the dying judiciary of Sri Lanka

Basil Fernando  The appointment of the first lady Chief Justice would normally have been a day for great celebrations. However, in the context of the attack on the Sri Lankan judiciary since the adoption of the 1978 Constitution such a celebration would belie the actual situation of the judiciary as well as all the administration […]

PAKISTAN: Eleven persons were killed in the name of honour during the first four months of 2011 in Sindh province

Naghma Iqtidar  An honor killing is the murder of a family member by his or her relatives due to the belief of wrongdoing. These wrongdoings are decided by the family if they think that the dishonor was brought upon them by the victim who are mostly girls and women. Honor killings are still occurring in […]

BANGLADESH: Open Letter to all civil society organizations working on Bangladesh on lessons to be learned from the brutal attack on FMA Razzak

Basil Fernando  The attempted eye gouging incident in at Paikgachha village, where a human rights defender and journalist, FMA Razzak and his brother were attacked by a about 40 persons mobilized by a major in Bangladesh army, Mustafizur Rahman Bokul, is a painful experience to all. It is necessary to learn from this experience so […]

PAKISTAN: Child slavery — 20,000 children with small heads are run by the shrines for beggary

Malik Ayub Sumbal  No one knows about the reality and sad saga of these greenish veiled and shaved head individuals carried by their masters with a chain about their necks to get the sympathies of the masses for the sake of begging. The worst form of slavery in the name of religious tradition has become […]

BANGLADESH: Land grabber and eye gouger Major Mustafizur is still serving with the Bangladesh army

Basil Fernando The attack on FMA Razzak led by Major Mustafizur of the Bangladesh military (BANGLADESH: Army officer’s family gouges eyes and torture after kidnapping Human Rights Defender FMA Razzak, who is going to die without treatment due to pressures from armed forces and intelligence agencies) is now well known. The implications of military officers […]