HRCP on Allegations of Rana Sanaullah being ill-treated in jail

In the crackdown against dissent the establishment seems to have decided they will lock up every politician they can. Senior politician and PML-N leader, Rana Sanaullah was arrested by the Anti Narcotics Force (ANF) and according to reports by his family is being ill-treated in jail.

The Human Rights Commission of Pakistan (HRCP) recently issued a statement expressing deep concerns “over the grave allegations it has received regarding senior PML-N leader Rana Sanaullah’s treatment in detention. HRCP was approached by his wife, Nabila Sanaullah, who claims that her husband, a diabetes and blood pressure patient, shows visible signs of ill health. After an initial meeting the day he was arrested, Mrs Sanaullah says she was not allowed to see him until three days later. She found that his voice was very low, his hands were trembling and he could not walk without support. He told his wife he had not been given anything to eat for 48 hours following his arrival at the District Jail in Lahore. He added that he had been kept in solitary confinement in a small cell and made to sleep on a mat on the floor. According to his wife, he was told by the jail authorities that no family member had been to see him.”

The HRCP notes that the charges by his family “are serious charges and need to be investigated swiftly and independently. HRCP has applied for permission to visit Mr Sanaullah, but this has not been granted yet. We have been told that the authorities concerned have directed the jail staff to issue a report on the state of his health. However, given widespread allegations of political victimisation, independent observation and assessment is necessary. Internal reports alone will not inspire confidence. Indeed, if there is no reason for public concern, then the government’s apparent reluctance to grant HRCP permission to visit Mr Sanaullah only increases the anxiety over his treatment in detention. HRCP would like to remind the state of its obligation to ensure that all prisoners have access to the food and medicine they need. To deprive any prisoner of this basic standard of care amounts to cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment. HRCP strongly advises the government to take urgent action in this regard if it is to refute the claims of political victimisation.”

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