Rape Evidence And Legislation In Pakistan

rape-legislation

A lot of controversial discussions are doing the rounds these days over the ruling of Council of Islamic Ideology (CII) against submission of DNA proof as primary evidence in rape cases. At a glance it seems preposterous to pass such rulings. Let’s delve a little deeper into the matter.

First of all, let me elaborate what the CII is. The CII is a constitutional institution that renders legal advice to the Government of Pakistan and the Parliament on Islamic issues. Basically, it’s meant to ensure that the laws of Pakistan are in compliance with Islamic laws. The committee came under public lashing recently when it declared that DNA test results are impermissible as primary evidence in rape cases. This in turn, makes one think how exactly does Islam tackle the concept of rape evidence.

There are several schools of thought over establishing evidence for rape. Each school has its own interpretations and justifications. However, what matters to us as Pakistanis, is what Pakistani law says and the fact remains that our law is flawed and unjust. It requires the victim to prove the crime (by presenting witnesses) and if the victim fails, they become punishable by law. The main problem with it is that it fails to distinguish between the crimes of rape and zina while placing the proof of burden heavily on the victim.

Therefore, we need to fix our Zina Ordinance first. Clear distinction must be made between both rape and zina and then proper legislation should be established to treat them. Our law makers/leaders must understand that this country’s laws must reduce crimes in the society and safeguard the interests of all citizens instead of making their lives more difficult.

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