ISLAMABAD, Oct 17: There are more than 70 children languishing in various jails of the NWFP under Section 40 of the Frontier Crimes Regulation (FCR) 1901 , including more than 16 boys and girls who have been imprisoned for crimes allegedly committed by their fathers or other extended family members.
Records provided to Dawn by Sparc reveal a horrifying picture of the administrative and judicial system in Fata, comprising 11 regions and agencies, since the regulation was imposed there by the British for prescribing trial procedure for offences and civil disputes more than 100 years ago.
All of the 16 boys and girls belong to Frontier Region Lakki. Fifteen of them have been shifted to Haripur prison after they were awarded three-year imprisonment each by the assistant political agent (APA) of the area under Section 40, according to which collective punishment could be imposed on anyone in the tribal areas for the crime committed by his or her spouse or extended family members, including anyone from their Khel (cast) or tribe.
The imprisonment of these children is conditional: after completion of their jail terms they must be reproduced before the political agent, who under the FCR is empowered to either release or award them further three-year imprisonment each.
The children lodged in the Haripur Jail also include two- year-old Zarmina, daughter of Qadir Khan, and her sisters Wazir Azam (7) and Islam Bibi (8) and nine-year-old brother Sadiq Mohammad.
Seven-year-old Iran Khan and his brother Tahir Khan (8) along with Tahir Mohammad (3) are also lodged in the prison, besides Zul Habib (3), her sister Narmina (6) and brothers Abdul Khaliq (5), Abdul Wahid (8) and Abdul Malik (14).
Similarly, Shawal Bibi (5), her sister Aman (8) and brothers Wasil Khan (9) and Kamishnor (7) are undergoing three-year imprisonment in Haripur prison.
In Central Prison Dera Ismail Khan, seven-year-old Shah Hussain, a resident of Lakki, is undergoing the same imprisonment.
According to deputy national coordinator Sparc, Peshawar, there were more than 70 juvenile inmates in different jails of NWFP, some of whom were imprisoned for longer periods like Aqal Deen (18) sent to jail by assistant political agent, Miram Shah, for 42 years.
Similarly, Shakeen Gul (20-year now) was imprisoned for 10- years by APA Wana on June 19, 2000. Both are lodged at the Haripur Central Jail, he said.
The records show that there are 13 juveniles serving three- year simple and rigorous imprisonment under Section 40 in Central Prison D.I. Khan.
They include Yar Mohammad (17); Ismail Khan (17); Ghulam Hussain (11); Eid Badshah (14); Gohar Rehman (17); Salim (14); Sabir (17); Khan Saeer (16); Farooq Khan (16); Naeeb (17)and Said Jali (17).
There are four juveniles in the district jail Kohat, who had been awarded imprisonment by APA of Orakzai. They include Rashid (16), son of Nooristan, Fazal Haq (17), son of Khwaba Gul, Mohammad Janab (16), son of Gul Akbar, and Said Khan, son of Lamat Sher.
Besides, there are ten other juveniles in Haripur Jail belonging to Bajaur Agency and other areas like Lakki. They are: Matiullah (15), son of Mohammad Ata; Samiullah (16), son of Mohammad Rehman; Israr (12), son of Umar Gul; Ali Haider (18), son of Bacha Khan and his brother Shakirullah (17); Sattar (13), son of Saqi; Mohibullah (17), son of Hamidullah; Mushtaq (16), son of Taj Mohammad, and Qismatullah (17), son of Pir Marjan. Seventeen-year-old Niaz Ahmed, son of Mirza Khan, who was awarded three-year RI by APA, Bara, is lodged at the Central Prison Peshawar.