The Council of Islamic Ideology (CII) had 
drawn flak from civil society and legal circles who termed its earlier recommendations against the law.
declared DNA tests unacceptable as primary evidence in cases of rape, but could be used as a supporting evidence for confirmation of the crime.—File Photo
The Council of Islamic Ideology (CII) had drawn flak from civil society and legal circles who termed its earlier recommendations against the law. declared DNA tests unacceptable as primary evidence in cases of rape, but could be used as a supporting evidence for confirmation of the crime.—File Photo

ISLAMABAD: Under pressure after severe criticism over its controversial ruling in May this year which discarded DNA as primary evidence in rape cases, the Council of Islamic Ideology (CII) began deliberations on Wednesday to review its earlier recommendations.

The Council will give its final ruling on DNA admissibility on Thursday.

The earlier recommendations of the CII said DNA could be used in rape cases only when four witnesses testified to the crime but the accused denied charges. In other words, DNA could be used only to supplement primary evidence of four witnesses.

The CII recommendations drew flak from civil society and legal circles who termed the recommendations against the law.

In an apparent damage control exercise, the CII convened again today to deliberate on the issue.

“CII aims to provide the maximum facilitation to avail this opportunity of using DNA testing as primary evidence in rape cases. But the only hurdle in the way of giving justice to people is lack of speedy trials and absence of strict implementation of laws,” said CII senior member and head of the Pakistan Ulema Council Allama Tahir Ashrafi.

His statement was supported by Allama Amin Shaheedi who said DNA is a vital tool to identify rapists.

The Human Rights Commission of Pakistan (HRCP) had earlier blasted the Council for undermining the DNA evidence. In its latest statement, the HRCP stated that rape is on a sharp rise in the country and only in Lahore 113 cases of rape including 32 gang rape cases have been reported so far this year.

AFP adds: Members of the CII attending the conference on Wednesday also suggested amendments to Pakistan’s blasphemy laws, proposing the death penalty for people convicted of making false accusations.

“All the religious scholars agreed to put an end to the misuse of blasphemy laws,” Allama Tahir Ashrafi told news agency AFP. “Keeping in view the suggestions of human rights activists and civil society members, the Council of Ideology has decided to fix the same penalty for the person who falsely accuses of blasphemy as the accused,” he added.

Ashrafi said the proposed amendment would ensure that “nobody dares to use religion to settle personal scores”.

“The amendment will also silence critics of the blasphemy laws,” he added.


Do you have information you wish to share with Dawn.com? You can email our News Desk to share news tips, reports and general feedback. You can also email the Blog Desk if you have an opinion or narrative to share, or reach out to the Special Projects Desk to send us your Photos, or Videos.

More From This Section

Most Popular

Comments (44) Closed




Awan Bhai
Sep 18, 2013 08:02pm

I could not see any Scientist or technical person in the above picture. ?. How come Religious scholars can took the decisions on Scientific aspects without even hearing the other side of the story that how DNA helps in localizing the accused.

Imran
Sep 18, 2013 08:10pm

Are we really going to give any weight to whatever decision these (forensic Mullahs) people come up with. What a charade? Stop with this nonsense Pakistan.

I would urge the government to just do the right thing and follow science and facts not Mullahs. Urge the council members to board a cruise ship to Paradise and see them off from Gwadar.

sumair
Sep 18, 2013 08:09pm

Why do even need their permission on DNA . huh!

shami
Sep 18, 2013 08:25pm

Do these people even understand what "DNA" is. I believe that these people do not even know how to understand and interpret Quran. A five year old is raped and they are looking for witnesses. This CII should be dissolved and some literate Ullema's should be brought into this committee.

Sonal
Sep 18, 2013 08:32pm

Sorry for being so ignorant, but why is the Council of ISLAMIC Ideology ruling on what constitutes as rape evidence and what doesn't?

What's currently accepted as primary evidence for rape in Pakistan, if DNA isn't?

Qaiser Bakhtiari
Sep 18, 2013 08:45pm

fate of a whole nation in couple of Mullah's hands. Pakistanis should be very scared.

Syed
Sep 18, 2013 08:58pm

What qualification do these Mullahs have? What authority? Which degrees? Islam was the light for the entire world and these illiterate mullahs are hell bent to turn our religion into a culture of dark ages. God save us from them.

mhrana
Sep 18, 2013 09:12pm

Thank God Molvis got a bit of reason in their heads. They have already made a mockery of our religion and nation in the world through their earlier ruling in May this year.

Sarwat
Sep 18, 2013 09:13pm

So these mullahs will ask those small kids to provide witnesses too before the criminals are declared rapists. That way they can really show their real wit.

Karachi Wala
Sep 18, 2013 09:18pm

Karachi Wala
Sep 18, 2013 09:21pm

Ashrafi said the proposed amendment would ensure that

M. Siddique
Sep 18, 2013 09:24pm

These so called "Ulemas" have looked at different injunction in isolation. Allah has told us that He has made every human different from the other. Did Ulema ever think of it as a clue to the fact that until we figure out how we are different, in rape cases the four witness rule aplied. But now that with the wisdom Allah has bestowed on humans, we have found out the intrinsic details of human genome that is the DNA. we should apply that knowledge and move away from the 4 witness scenario. If Ulemas cannot connect the dotts of what Allah has commended then they should relinquish the responsibility of reviewing the laws of the land. Similar logic applies to Blasphemy laws.

Pankaj
Sep 18, 2013 09:57pm

what is this CII ? Is it above Pakistani parliament and supreme court ?

fiaz
Sep 18, 2013 11:06pm

do these people not know the diffarence between RAPE and ADULTRY???

Taha Lateef
Sep 18, 2013 11:31pm

I don't understand, even from a religious perspective, why DNA report is not admissible as an evidence in the cases of rape. The doctors / medical professionals who are making the DNA report are provding witness to the fact that the henious crime took place based on the DNA evidence.

Nasser Ali Khan
Sep 18, 2013 11:37pm

Bunch of uneducated & uncouth persons with no sense of humanity which is the bedrock of Islam!

Agha Ata
Sep 19, 2013 12:11am

CII would try its best to find reasons to reject DNA as a proof, as this would be against the age-old concept of woman as a seducer and man as a seduced victim. They, instead, like the idea of four pious- honest- Muslim witnesses who stand there watching the whole performance (and doing nothing to save the izzat of the poor- helpless woman) and then have the courage to stand at the witness box to give their statements, while the rapist has the guts to gingerly finish his business despite four honest- Muslim witnesses watching as clearly as a surma silai entering a surma dani and then promptly disappear and leaving behind the poor woman protesting and crying. The whole supposedly- occurred episode can possibly take place maybe once in ten million rape cases. (Or hundred million rape cases, maybe more)!

Imran A.
Sep 19, 2013 12:30am

This committee should be asked what ruling should be offered to people caught in terrorism. Should they be hanged or treated as fighters of Islam?

Sohail
Sep 19, 2013 12:36am

Another gift from Zia. These people are a joke and should not be taken seriously.

Jawwad
Sep 19, 2013 12:50am

As a common person with Muslim heritage I shall not believe any Mullah unless there are four of witnesses to what he preaches is proven right. Go figure. Using Western made technologies like microphones, plastic bottles, water bottles, copper wires and other communication devices these fools have you fooled too. And now they want to hang people for lying? I thought as per Islamic concept, God is most benevolent and most merciful so where is the concept of punish by death comes from?

Oz
Sep 19, 2013 02:03am

What is the difficulty in that? DNA testing is very accurate. There is only 1 chance in 7000 that the specimen collected from the victim does not belong to the suspect - In reality, it is one in a million type situation.

Pass the law and save our children from these haram doers!

raonaumaan
Sep 19, 2013 02:58am

CII is a useless forum should be banned by supereme court...

Arjumand
Sep 19, 2013 04:36am

Only in our country can a group of men pass judgement on the admissability of scientific evidence in a crime comitted against women. Only in our country do men make laws that leave women without any recourse while guilty men go free. And only in our country does the myth of male superiority in all facets of life riegn supreme. I wonder how many of these gentleman have studied enough science to understand what DNA is let alone understand the undeniability of a DNA match. Witnesses can be bought off, or "disappear" but DNA does not lie. This is the one reason that we as a country, and a religion, are regressing instead of progressing. It is because our lives are being dictated by laws made by people who are totally ignorant about the subject. Will we ever learn that for a civilized society to move forward, we need laws that treat all its citizens equally regardless of gender, race or religion?. Are we not giving permission to our men to go ahead and rape to their hearts' content, as long as they make sure that four people do not witness their act? And we wonder why the incidence of rape is on the rise.

Abbas Syed
Sep 19, 2013 07:02am

The moulvi sahaban of CII are fully aware of the fact that how religion has become irrelevant across world in the present age of science. They also know that not in too distant future this is also going to happen in Pakistan. Their willingness to review their earlier ruling on DNA admissibility in rape cases is an attempt to stay relevant in this changing time.

M. Ahmed
Sep 19, 2013 07:54am

Please someone educate them what DNA science is. Perhaps than they will, may be, may be value science and its use in todays crime fighting.

illawarrior
Sep 19, 2013 08:24am

How many rapists are stupid enough to commit their crime in front of 4 witnesses. If there were 4 witnesses, why did they not stop him?

Danish A.
Sep 19, 2013 10:15am

Here is a better question: do we really need CII? Why spend money on CII, dissolve it and spend that money on education and science for kids. This way once those kids grow up, they won't have to argue about science or punishing rapists. If we keep living like a 14th century society, we will have a 14th century nation.

Rizwan
Sep 19, 2013 11:18am

They should have focussed more on the primary reason of gang rape cases. From my experience, rape is generally related to the consumption of alcohol. Why do they not start a crusad against the alcohol industry in Pakistan? Unless they do this, they will be chasing the symptoms

Akram
Sep 19, 2013 02:21pm

the CII and other Mullah inspired councils should be disbanded. They are irrelevant and only going to delay justice.

Striver
Sep 19, 2013 02:33pm

We must review all the past cases and bring those to justice who have brought false blasphemy cases to the court. Compensation must be awarded to those who are wrongfully imprisoned.

As for the accuser, death penalty suggested is sufficient punishment for false allegations, This should be extended to non-blasphemy cases.

However, there is dire need to modernize the evidence collection at the local level, have a structure in place to ensure a person is not given death sentence wrongfully.

ramesh
Sep 19, 2013 03:43pm

Shame on these mullahs still thinking

Ishrat Ali
Sep 19, 2013 04:04pm

More guidance from holly Qur'an (Sura NOOR) can be had in this respect.

NASAH (USA)
Sep 19, 2013 04:08pm

Two deaths for blasphemy -- one for the accused and the other for the accuser -- are NOT better than NO DEATHS for blasphemy.

saad shah
Sep 19, 2013 04:58pm

that is asking too much from them... you cant expect them to know what DNA is look at them do they look like educated people took a biology class at school/college?

Dr. Malik
Sep 19, 2013 06:09pm

@Awan Bhai: because my friend science to these so-called Muslim/Islam experts is un-Islamic, burn schools don't send girls to school is Islam for them!

Taufeeq
Sep 19, 2013 06:12pm

these people are utterly useless..

rehan
Sep 19, 2013 08:52pm

I read most of the comments and disagree.. the difference is what a woman slept with some one intentionally and than later...for some reason accused that person of rape...rape is very serious crime... so what law should do... the DNA will prove that the incident happened...so does this accused person should be convicted of rape due to just the DNA... ??

so that 's why the 4 witness is very important accept... I see lot of people just fed up of our ulemas and deen just doing opposition for the sake of opposition..

second wisdom upon 4 witness is .. that the crime has happend in a public place ...meaning otherwise where you will get 4 eye witness. So that means if the woman went in privacy with the person where no one looking after them should be means that both have some how some inclination.. may Allah SBT protect all of us from evil path..

naghman qureshi
Sep 19, 2013 09:55pm

look at them.these guys are a bunch of jokers.wake up pakistan

Arjumand
Sep 20, 2013 03:30am

Could someone please elaborate on the role of the CII in the judiciary? Other than a beard, what qualifications does one need to get on the committee? What power does it have? Where are the courts when these wonderfully knowledgable people make these logical and intelligent decisions? Who thought of this to begin with? Dear departed Zia-ul-haq?

Faisal
Sep 20, 2013 03:41am

DNA matching could be really helpful in crime investigation especially in rape cases involving small children who cannot or are not able to identify the raper. It should be treated as ONLY evidence in rape charges instead of four MALE evidences rule of 6th century when technology was not present at that time.

Danish A.
Sep 20, 2013 09:59am

@Rizwan: what does alcohol has to do with anything? There is no study to support your claims. Rapists lack respect for others, especially women. They can pray to Allah all day long, but until Pakistanis gain respect for autonomy of women, such silly DNA questions and rape are certainly likely to keep up. Arguably, same can be said about ubiquity of rape claims in india. Thus, education and equality of gender from a very early age is the key.

Rashid
Sep 20, 2013 02:39pm

@rehan: what if someone kidnaps a woman and then rape her alone at some distant place which is a common scene in our society first kidnap someone then rape her, does that still mean woman and man have some inclination?

just take the case of sumbul happened in lahore some days ago, she is an underage 5 year old, she was kidnapped and then rapped, from where she will produce these four witnesses?

joe
Sep 20, 2013 10:59pm

Why people zia for everything .. It is us who wants these things otherwise such arrangements would have quickly vaporized just after zia's death

ali
Sep 21, 2013 10:37am

This mullah's are nothing more than a jokers. They don't even know how does DNA works. Why are they deciding about the DNA and make decision. Nothing can be changed in pakistan as far as these mullah's are there good for nothing but big beards