Lord Nazir’s conviction

Calls are mounting for Britain’s Lord Nazir Ahmed to be stripped of his peerage after he was convicted of sexually abusing two children in the 1970s

Nazir, who is currently awaiting sentencing, was born in Azad Jammu and Kashmir and has been considered close to the Government of Pakistan and pro-Kashmir causes

He was about 17 when the offences occurred, although his victims — a boy and a girl — were significantly younger

Nazir’s elder brothers were also suspected of the same crime, but they were found to be unfit to stand trial due to poor health

However, jurors concluded that they were also involved, meaning they would also probably have been found guilty

Nazir, who said he would appeal the ruling, has a sordid history of sexual crimes, having previously faced a parliamentary inquiry over allegations that he sexually exploited a woman who approached him for help

However, he resigned from the House of Lords before he could be expelled

He still maintains the title because withdrawing it requires an act of parliament

In court, Nazir reportedly tried to smear the victims for having financial motives and for not reporting the crimes in a timely manner

It’s almost as if Nazir was trying to exploit the close-knit nature of many Pakistani immigrant families and their general mistrust of the authorities

The defence was also ignorant of the fact that many adult victims, let alone children, take months and years to muster up the courage to speak out about their abuse

The conviction is a credit to the British legal system and rights activists, who have helped ensure that even after half a century, people who committed violent crimes such as child abuse will still face justice

Nazir also became a political pariah after the charges relating to his time in office became known

Compare that to Pakistan, where we have seen people facing or even convicted of crimes maintaining popularity and position within political parties and society

Meanwhile, despite some recent improvements, police are rarely willing to investigate recent crimes involving influential people

Published in The Express Tribune, January 8th, 2022

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Date:09-Jan-2022 Reference:View Original Link