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Pul-i-Charkhi jail inmates say miss families on Eid

Pul-i-Charkhi jail inmates say miss families on Eid

Sep 01, 2017 - 09:53

KABULinfo-icon (Pajhwok): Prisoners at the Pul-i-Charkhi jail east of Kabul say they miss their families on Eid more than anytime. While death row inmates say they count days and nights to their death and are unconcerned about the festival.

Officials of the Pul-i-Charkhi prison gathered the inmates at the fist block of the jail to be interviewed by Pajhwok Afghan News.

During the interview, the jail officials stood away and they could not hear the inmates talking.

Abdul Jalil, a resident of Qalat, the capital of southern Zabul province, said he was arrested and sentenced to 16 years in jail as a political prisoner. He had spent five years in the jail already.

When asked how Eid was celebrated inside the prison, the 70-year-old Jalil said: “Freedom is a huge blessing, when your freedom is curtailed, then all pleasures stop. How would someone celebrate Eid being a captive in a cage behind eight doors.”

He said Eid in prison was is not like Eid celebrated outside. He said the government did not provided them extra food or fruits except the daily meal, but the prisoners of one block can meet the prisoners of another blocks to felicitate them Eid.

According to officials, as many as 9,000 prisoners are currently being held in Pul-i-Charkhi prison. From 400 to 2,000 prisoners are kept in each block.

Abdul Jalil said ahead of Eid, their family members and friends used to bring them dried and fresh fruits but no one would turn up to visit them during Eid holidays.

He said he has two wives and 16 children. “I love all of them but I miss my daughters the most.”

Mualvi Abdul Ali, a resident of Kisham district in northeastern Badakhshan province, is sentenced to 16 years in prison over drug trafficking.

He said: “We are two brothers and we both have been jailed and there is no one to lead our 16-member family.”

He said he was sad away from his family. “It is fine in ordinary days for inmates, but during Eid days we miss our family members, relatives and friends,” he said.

Mohammadullah, who has been in the prison for the past 14 years, said he was sentenced to death in absentia.

“I am going to be hanged. I have no Eid, every second passes like the movement of death, but still I thankful to Allah that I am alive.”

He said there were many prisoners like him awaiting their death. Mohammadullah asked the government to take a final decision on death row prisoners.

Most of the prisoners lashed out at judicial organs and said the judges made decisions in the absence of evidence.  They, however, were happy with behavior of jail officials.

Brig. Gen. Abdul Tawab Ahmadzai, in charge of the jail, said all prisoners were being dealt with in accordance with the law and were provided their due rights.


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