LAHORE: A committee formed to probe allegations of mistreatment of women prisoners arrested after the May 9 violence has rejected the claims of Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf chief Imran Khan.
The committee comprising SSP Investigation Dr Anoosh Masood and Lahore Deputy Commissioner Rafia Haider told Caretaker Chief Minister Mohsin Naqvi on Monday, after a visit to the Kot Lakhpat jail, that the inmates were being treated as per standard operating procedures (SOPs).
The two officers said they met everyone separately and questioned them over any mistreatment.
“All inmates in the case, including Khadija Shah, were fine,” SSP Anoosh Masood told the media outside the prison.
She said no male from jail staff could enter the area allocated for women prisoners. She said a female doctor, a psychologist and two lady health workers were there round the clock.
The caretaker government formed the committee on Monday morning to investigate Imran Khan’s allegations of ill-treatment of arrested PTI women.
In his tweet, Imran Khan had requested the Supreme Court to take suo motu notice and issue directions to release women political prisoners, who were peacefully protesting.
“If there were any doubts about women being mistreated in jails, this press conference from this certified criminal (Rana Sanaullah) should remove all such doubts. He is so obviously trying to cover up and preempt the horror stories about to break in the media. Women have never been so mistreated and harassed by the state as they have been by this fascist govt when they were exercising their right to protest peacefully,” Khan said in a tweet.
Caretaker chief minister Mohsin Naqvi refuted the allegations of mistreatment of women in prison.
Referring to the May 9 violence, he said some 32 women were arrested and 11 of them were currently on judicial remand. He, however, declared that all those involved in the attack on Jinnah House were being arrested without fail.
Dismissing the allegations as mere propaganda, the CM pleaded for caution before levelling such accusations. He said surveillance cameras and monitoring teams were in place to ensure security.
Meanwhile, Civil Society Network Pakistan’s Secretary Amina Malik has urged the government to give access to a women delegation of civil society, bar associations and press clubs to meet the imprisoned women.
Published in Dawn, May 30th, 2023