Jirga fixes Rs1m compensation for each of 36 lives lost in tribal hostility

Published January 27, 2019
Bijaranis, Teghanis bury the hatchet after 24 years of rivalry. ─ File photo
Bijaranis, Teghanis bury the hatchet after 24 years of rivalry. ─ File photo

SHIKARPUR: A jirga (tribal court) presided over by Dr Mohammad Ibrahim Jatoi — a highly influential and respectable feudal lord and former member of the National Assembly — late on Friday evening fixed Rs1 million compensation against the loss of one life while settling a 24-year-old feud between the Bijarani and Teghani tribes that has claimed 36 lives and left scores of other people wounded so far, besides causing material losses to both sides.

Chieftains and elders of various other tribes, communities and clans who included provincial Minister Mir Shabbir Khan Bijarani, Sardar Mehboob Khan Bijarani, Mir Iqbal Khan Bijarani, Sardar Tegho Khan Teghani, Mir Sardar Khan Chandio, Sardar Usman Khan Almani, Mir Burhan Khan Chandio, Pir Basheer Ahmed Shah Jillani, Sardar Nazir Ahmed Khan Jamro and Jeay Sindh Mahaz-Riaz leader Riaz Ahmed Chandio assisted Dr Ibrahim Jatoi in reaching a conclusion in the dispute.

Some of the participants were nominated by the respective sides to effectively plead their case.

Bijaranis, Teghanis bury the hatchet after 24 years of rivalry

A large number of people, mainly from the rival Bijarani and Teghani tribes, attended the hours-long hearing.

After hearing the two sides and holding consultations with other tribal chieftains and elders — called in such courts ameens and musheers — Dr Ibrahim Jatoi gave his ruling fixing Rs1m for each of the 36 murders. He found Teghanis guilty of committing 19 and Bijaranis 17 murders. Accordingly, they were ordered to pay the compensation to the other side as per the amount fixed by the jirga in this particular case. They were supposed to make the payment in three monthly instalments.

Practically, only Teghanis will have to pay the differential, ie Rs2m.

The ruling was read out by Haji Karim Dino Badani and accepted by the two rival sides.

It made it clear that any side violating any provision of the ruling would have to pay a fine of Rs500,000 for each violation.

It said that the compensation against injuries and all other losses caused during hostile actions would be decided and responsibilities fixed at another jirga to be held on Feb 17.

The hostility had reportedly started with an incident of theft in 1995 and continued to be fuelled by attacks and counter-attacks carried out against each other in the following years. Such incidents involving the two sides were reported from different areas of Shikarpur and Kandhkot districts.

A similar jirga held a few years ago had given its ruling and the two sides had agreed to bury the hatchet but the truce did not last long as one side defaulted on payment of compensation, usually allowed to be paid in monthly instalments.

Published in Dawn, January 27th, 2019

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