ISLAMABAD: Over 3,500 women and children interned in jails across Pakistan are living in deplorable conditions in the absence of satisfactory prison facilities.
These details were shared in a meeting of a national committee formed to improve the conditions of women and children in jails organised by the Federal Ombudsman Office on Friday.
The committee on jail reforms formed on the Supreme Court’s order submitted its report, highlighting miserable conditions of women and children.
A team of officers visited several prisons across the country to gather first-hand information about the living conditions of inmates. Officers were asked to report on the overall condition at jails as well.
Speakers at the meeting shared that currently there are around 1,600 females, 1,500 juveniles and 425 children living with their mothers in major jails across the country.
Top human rights lawyer Asma Jahangir, the committee chairperson, stressed the need to change the entire system in order to improve the conditions of prisoners. “This is obviously not an easy task and no doubt very challenging. The responsibility, however, lies with the government,” she said.
Asma, said that compared to the 1980s and 1990s, the complaints of sexual abuse registered by female prisoners has witnessed a drastic decline. “But the issue still persists in some jails,” she added.