PAKISTAN: Torture and inhuman treatments to eight detainees falsely charged by the police


Urgent Appeal Case: UA-249-2007
ISSUES: Child rights, Sexual violence, Torture, Violence against women, Women's rights,

Dear friends,

The Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) writes to inform you about the torture and inhuman treatment of eight persons by the police in Khaipure Mirs District, Sindh.  The police tied the detainees with ropes and chains around their necks. The detainees were also forced to bark like dogs and bite each other like wild bears; if they refused, they would be beaten.


On July 15, Hosat (15) runaway from her parents’ house because she was repeatedly physically abused by her parents. In several occasions, she had been beaten and tortured because she went out to play with her friends. Her father, Syed Mohammad Ali Shah, is a prominent landlord. He had links with other influential persons and a close aid of Pir Pagara, a prominent religious figure in Pakistan and friend of President General Musharraf.

Hosat was wearing men’s clothes when she left her parent’s home in Nara village, Khaipure Mirs District, Sindh. She wore men’s clothes to avoid being identified, fearing that she would be sent back to her parents. When she reached a highway, she met Ali Gohar, a farmer and a tractor driver. Hosat then asked Gohar to take her to the district court. When Hosat told him that she was a girl, Gohar instead took her to the Gaindaho police post Kot Deji, and turned her over to the police.

Gohar turned Hosat over to Abdul Qadir, deputy superintendent of police (DSP) of the said police station. Asghar Sanjwani, station head office (SHO) of Gaindaho Police Station and Mohammad Khan Siyal, SHO Swarah of Police Station, Khaipure Mirs District, were also there. Hosat shouted loudly and cried, fearing that she would be sent back to her parents and she would be killed. After the police officers took custody of her, they allowed Gohar to go home.

On July 22, police arrested Gohar and seven other persons, for charges of theft of motorcycle. The complaint was filed by Shah. Those arrested together with Gohar were: Ghulam Murtaza Bhanbhro, Ahmed Ali, Manzoor Hussain, Peerano Rajar, Sobho Bhanbhro, Ali Khan Bhanbhro and Meer Hassan. One of them, Bhanbhro, is a government engineer working on oil and gas field. He was arrested at his workplace. The Swarah police allegedly forced them to confess. The police also said they were among the 13 suspects in the complaint.

While in police custody, it is reported that Shah lodged another complaint for the murdering her daughter, Hosat, against the eight persons. But according to the relatives of the girl and reports from various local newspapers, her own parents could have murdered Hosat or she could have committed suicide. Her body was buried one or two days before the arrest. The police however allegedly tortured the eight persons to confess the murder.

On July 25, the eight persons were transferred to the Kot Deji police station. While in police custody, they were forced to strip naked in the detention center, and were severely tortured. The police officers, DSP Chachar, SHO of Kot Deji and Akbar Channa, allegedly forced them to act like dogs and bears. The police tied ropes and chains around their necks. They also ordered them to bark loudly and bite each other like wild bears. The police hit them with iron rods, boots and leather whips, and pounded their heads into the walls when they refused.

On August 4 at the Kot Deji police, it is reported that Shah filed another complaint for the alleged rape of his daughter against the victims, despite he had already filed a complaint of murder against the 8 persons and her daughter was buried. On August 6, Shah produced a girl in court, whom he claimed to be his daughter and a victim of rape. But Ali Gohar told the court she was not the same girl he handed over to the police.  Also several women in the area attested that the girl Shah produced in court was not his daughter.

Apparently this is yet another offence by which the police authorities force the victims to confess by torture. The AHRC has been informed that the villagers in the area have protested against the police’ actions. They held a march demanding the unconditional release of detainees.


In the Pakistan, police officers, particularly those in remote areas, are often under heavy influence of powerful persons. It is likely that persons being illegally arrested falsely charged and brutally tortured when the complainants had connections with the police. This compromising role of police authorities has seriously undermined the protection of rights of the people, and they had virtually become working for the powerful persons.

Also, in several occasions, the AHRC raised serious concerns regarding violence against women in Pakistan, in particular of honour killings. When a girl or woman had committed “disgraceful acts” or “displeased” her family, she might be killed to restore the family’s honour. This had become a deep-rooted practice although it is a crime. Also, when a woman is killed on pretext of honour killing, it is difficult to hold the killers, who are often the family members, to be responsible.

For recent cases of honour killings in Pakistan, please refer to: UA-033-2007; UA-175-2005.

In September 2003, another AHRC’s publication, Human Rights Solidarity likewise published report on the same topic.

Please write to following authorities, and demand for an immediate action against those responsible police officers in Khairpur Mirs district. They should be held liable for the torture and inhuman treatment of the victims. Thorough investigation should be conducted. If there is no sufficient evidence to support the charges against the victims, they must be released unconditionally and the charges against them must be withdrawn. A credible inquiry into the death of the girl should also be conducted.

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Dear __________,

PAKISTAN: Torture and inhuman treatments to eight detainees falsely charged by the police

Name of the victims:
1. Ali Gohar 
2. Ghulam Murtaza Bhanbhro, an engineer
3. Ahmed Ali 
4. Manzoor Hussain
5. Peerano Rajar
6. Sobho Bhanbhro
7. Ali Khan Bhanbhro 
8. Meer Hassan
(The victims were living in the villages of Taluqa Nara, Janib Bhanbhro, Nihal Bhanbhro and Sadoro, District Thar, Sindh. They are presently detained at the Kot Deji police station, District Khairpur Mirs, Sindh)
Name of alleged perpetrators:
1. Abdul Qadir Chachar, Deputy Superintendent Police (DSP), Kot Geji town, District Khairpur Mirs, Sindh
2. Akbar Channa, Station Head officer (SHO) of Kot Deji
3. Asghar Sanjwani, Station Head Office (SHO) of Gaindaho Police Station
4. Mohammad Khan Siyal, SHO Swarah Police Station
5. Syed Mohammad Ali Shah, a resident of Nara village, Khaipure Mirs District, Sindh
Date of incident: from 22 July 2007 to present

I am writing to draw your attention to the continued detention and inhumane treatment of eight persons listed above. They were allegedly arrested by Swarah police on 22 July 2007 on the basis of false complaints for stealing a motorcycle by an influential landlord, Syed Mohammad Ali Shah. While in police custody, the victims were forced to confess and they also falsely implicated for the death of Shah’s daughter.

I have learned that Shah, filed another complaint of rape of his daughter even though there is already an existing complaint for the death of his daughter against the eight persons. Shah even produced a girl in court whom he claimed to be his daughter and the rape victim on August 6, but residents of the area attested that the girl was not his daughter. There are allegations that his daughter, Hosat, could have either been murdered on pretext of honour killing or committed suicide. Hosat’s death remained unknown.

I am deeply concerned with the police action of arresting and continuously detaining these persons over alleged false charges. I am gravely concerned of how they forced the victims to confess to the theft of the motorcycle, the death and subsequent rape of Shah’s daughter. At the Kot Deji police station where they are presently detained, police officers Chachar and Channa, allegedly brutally beat them, strip their clothes off and forced them to act like dogs and bears, barking and biting each other. They also hit them whenever they refused to do so.

I am extremely shocked by the manner that the police treated these persons and the continued failure to punish those responsible. I have learned that despite of serious allegations, no immediate actions were taken against the police, and the torture victims have remained under custody of the same unit.

I am also gravely concerned of the false and contradictory charges filed against the eight victims. Any persons charged with criminal offense should have been given due process of law and treated with due respect. I am disappointed that this is not the case for these eight persons.

I therefore urge you to intervene promptly to ensure that the charges against the victims are thoroughly reviewed. Should there be no sufficient grounds to hold them for trial, the charges against them should be withdrawn and they should be released unconditionally and immediately. I also urge you to ensure that allegations of inhumane treatment by the police are effectively investigated and that immediate sanctions are imposed upon them. Appropriate restrictions and sanction should be posed against the responsible policemen to ensure that the investigations are done independently.

Furthermore, I urge you to ensure that the death of Hosat will be thoroughly investigated. I am deeply concerned that her cause of death has not been thoroughly investigated as well. Also, I urge you to look into allegations of Shah’s interference in the process of police investigation and filing of complaints.

Yours sincerely,



1. General Pervez Musharraf
President’s Secretariat
Fax: +92 51 922 1422, 4768/ 920 1893 or 1835
E-mail: (please see –

2. Mr. Muhammad Wasi Zafar 
Minister of Law, Justice and Human Rights 
S Block Pakistan Secretariat 
Fax: +92 51 920 2628 

3. Mr. Justice Sabih Uddin
Chief Justice of Sindh High Court
High Court Building
Fax: +92-21-9213220

4. Dr. Ishrat UL Ibad 
Governor of Sindh province
Tel: + 92 21 920 1201

5. Dr. Arbab Abdul Rahim
Chief Minister of Sindh
Chief Minister House

6. Chief Secretary
Government of Sindh
Chief Secretariat, 
Karachi, Sindh province, 

7. Secretary 
(Criminal Prosecution) SGA &CD Department
Government of Sindh 
Sindh Secretariat,
Karachi, Sindh Province 

8. Dr. Faqir Hussain
Supreme Court of Pakistan
Supreme Court Building 
Tel: +92-51-9213770

9. Prof. Manfred Nowak
Special Rapporteur on the Question of Torture
Attn: Safir Syed
1211 Geneva 10
Tel: +41 22 917 9230

10. Mr. Jacob Egbert Doek
Committee on the Rights of the Child
1211 Geneva 10

Thank you.

Urgent Appeals Programme
Asian Human Rights Commission (

Document Type : Urgent Appeal Case
Document ID : UA-249-2007
Countries : Pakistan,
Issues : Child rights, Sexual violence, Torture, Violence against women, Women's rights,