Report
 
Human exploitation in the name of FCR
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March 25, 2011
President Asif Ali Zardari has full authority to replace the FCR with a new regulation. FATA Tribunal would be founded according to the announced package and its head would be a retired High Court judge. In addition, locals may appeal against the decisions of the political authorities. And the same tribunal would hear it. On the other hand, Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani has announced Rs1 billion grant for supply of gas and construction of an information technology university for educational activities in all tribal agencies. These announcements are still fruitless declarations
The ill-fated tribal areas of Pakistan are being used in the name of war against terrorism, action against the Soviet Union, supply line for Nato and other international interests. If the life of tribesmen of seven tribal agencies – Bajaur, Orakzai, Mohmand, South Waziristan North Waziristan, Khyber and Kurram – is reviewed then it would be revealed that these agencies still lack basic facilities of life even after 65 years of independence. The rulers, who took billion of rupees from international powers in the name of tribal agencies, never spent even a penny on education, health, employment and justice. Trampling of human rights has become the fate of these areas.

The English rulers imposed the Fata Crime Regulation (FCR) in 1901 to crush rebellion, but unfortunately this law is still in force. During the English rule, the laws were implemented on the basis of physical features and civilization and south Hind, Bengal and tribal areas were included in it. The purpose of implementation of such laws was to mortify the self-respect of the people.

After freedom, the black laws of English rule were removed from South Hind and Bengal, but unfortunately these are still implemented in the tribal areas. Under the FCR, a person could be detained for several years without committing any crime, land could be seized, heavy fine could be imposed and even deprived of right to vote. Literacy rate also remained low in these areas.

President Asif Ali Zardari announced a reform package for Tribal Areas on 14 August 2010 under which the Political Parties Act was to be implemented in the tribal areas and powers given to PA were to be curtailed. A committee comprising 10 political parties was formed in this regard and two meetings have been held in Quetta and Islamabad respectively. The law and order situation in the country is interlinked with the law and order situation in the tribal areas. The political parties have demanded of the government to bring constitutional, political and economical reforms in the country for implementation of law and order situation. The committee has demanded of President Asif Ali Zardari to ensure implementation of the announced package.

Akram Shah Lala of Pukhtoonkhwa Awami Milli Party said that all parties had agreed to the constitutional and political reforms but unfortunately few of the anti-forces were hindering its progress. An urgent political action is the only solution to restore peace in the tribal areas, said Hashim Babar of ANP.

According to Syed Akhwan Zada MNA, FCR was never misused during the Raj. Corrupt bureaucrats pay millions for their transfer to these areas and then they suck the blood of the locals using illegal activities. Innocent tribesmen are arrested without any charge and then released after taking heavy bribes.

President Asif Ali Zardari has full authority to replace the FCR with a new regulation. FATA Tribunal would be founded according to the announced package and its head would be a retired High Court judge. In addition, locals may appeal against the decisions of the political authorities. And the same tribunal would hear it. On the other hand, Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani has announced Rs1 billion grant for supply of gas and construction of an information technology university for educational activities in all tribal agencies. These announcements are still fruitless declarations.

In a ceremony held under the aegis of Islamabad NGOs at Quaid-e-Azam University, Head of History Department Dr Razia Sultana said that the obsolete FCR was limiting the tribal areas progress. Talking to the Voice of America, former president of Peshawar Bar Latif Afridi said that it was due to the opposition of Pakistani establishment that the FCR had not been terminated yet. It’s time that the president implemented the announced package after the recommendations of political parties.

Most of the terrorist activities are carried out by the young men of tribal areas. Peace in the country is linked with the peace in FATA. All political parties, government and armed forces should sit and devise a plan to establish law and order situation in the country. In short, creation of jobs, increase in literacy rate and grant of justice could help establish peace and contain terrorism in the war-torn province.



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