Fate of 2,596 Pul-i-Charkhi prisoners remains undecided
Zalmai Zabuli, who heads the upper house complaints’ commission, told Pajhwok Afghan News that a delegation of the commission had visited the prison two months ago and found that cases of 2596 prisoners had not been tried since their imprisonment.
After realising the problem, he said, the commission shared the issue several times with the presidential palace and the Supreme Court to access the cases of inmates, but no step was taken as yet.
“According the Afghanistan Penal Code, a case should be probed in 10 months and three days by the three tier court system, but there are some people in the Pul-i-Charkhi prison who have been waiting for the last seven years for the appellant court and the Supreme Court to hand down verdicts in their cases after the primary court,” he said.
Meanwhile, Lt. Gen. Abdul Alim Kohistani, the director of detention cenres in the Ministry of Interior (MoI), acknowledged cases of some prisoners were pending, but disputed the number of cases provided by the Meshrano Jirga’s delegation.
“The verdicts from the three tier courts don’t take more than two or three months, but there are some complicated cases which take maximum one year,” he said.
About 8000 to 9000 inmates are currently being held at the Pul-i-Charkhi convicted on charges ranging from murders, terrorism and other crimes including drug smuggling.
Fateh Mohammad, one of the detainees at the jail, said he was sentenced to 10 years in jail by the primary court on drug smuggling five years ago and the verdict was upheld by the appellant court, but the Supreme Court was yet to issue its verdict in his case.
Another inmate convicted by the primary court to 14 years in jail in a murder case said he was waiting for the past seven years for the apex court to announce his fate, but this case had disappeared in the court.
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