GILGIT: An undertrial prisoner allegedly committed suicide by jumping from the watchtower of the Central Jail, Gilgit, the other day.

Police said the body was shifted to City Hospital, Gilgit, for postmortem. Afterwards, it was handed over to family members.

They said Afraz Hussain, a resident of Danyor area of Gilgit, was jailed in April 2018 over a murder.

Later, relatives of the deceased staged a protest sit-in outside the Chief Minister’s House, carrying the body, and demanded an inquiry into the incident.

A brother of the deceased said it was clear jail authorities had failed to protect the prisoners’ lives. He asked where the security guards were when his brother went out of his barrack and climbed the watchtower.

He said his brother had been unwell for last three months, adding he had been visiting the SSP’s office for over a month to seek medical check-up of his sick brother. However, the jail authorities failed to provide medical care to him.

He suspected his brother might have committed suicide after being tortured by the jail officials.

Meanwhile, according to a notification issued by deputy superintendent of the central prison, seven officials have been suspended over negligence of duty.

On the directives of Chief Minister Khalid Khurshid, the home department has appointed the Gilgit district magistrate to investigate the incident.

TEACHER AWARDS: The regional government will introduce Gilgit-Baltistan Teacher Award initiative to encourage teachers to play their due role in improving enrolment in schools.

According to a press release issued on Friday, performance of teachers to be given awards would be assessed on the basis of their role in increasing students’ enrolment, education of women and girls, disabled children and in imparting technical and vocational skills to students.

The innovations will further include need-based and student-specific curriculum, covering essentials like out-of-box methods for promotion of education and critical thinking, employment of technology, promotion of local/endangered languages and highlighting challenges faced by the society.

The government will honour three such teachers, who have demonstrated outstanding and unwavering resolve and commitment to their profession.

Published in Dawn, May 21st, 2022

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