Pakistan’s judicial and legal system leaves much to be desired but even there the case of Muhammad Anwar, who after spending 28 years in jail, had his death sentence commuted, is a travesty of justice. Anwar was arrested in 1993 as a juvenile, sentenced in 1998, and since then has spent time in jail.
As an editorial in Dawn pointed out “though the man has been mercifully spared the gallows, a large chunk of his life has been spent behind bars when the law provided for remission.”
Further, Anwar’s is “not the only case of its kind” and a careful examination of Pakistan’s legal system would show “many more such grave miscarriages of justice. Finally, “juvenile justice laws need to be better implemented so youngsters are reformed and given another chance at life. Moreover, the case quoted above also highlights the need to speed up and improve the investigation and trial process. There can be no justification for keeping a person behind bars for nearly three decades only for the law to later realise that the statute books contained a remedy.”