IHC forms commission to ensure treatment of prisoners with HIV/Aids

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ISLAMABAD: The Islamabad High court wants the government to ensure the rights of prisoners.
It ordered on Monday that a commission to protect the rights of prisoners should be formed. It will be led by Minister of Human Rights Shireen Mazari and comprise secretaries of all the four provinces, the court said.
“The commission will ensure that the prisoners suffering from Hepatitis C and HIV/Aids get medical treatment in time,” a written order submitted by the court stated.
The conditions these prisoners were living in and the way they were treated by the staff was termed “alarming”.
“Nelson Mandela had said that if anyone wants to truly know a nation, they should look at its prisons,” the court said.
A notice has also been sent to the attorney general and advocate generals of all provinces. They have been ordered appear before the court on February 15 to help with the implementation of the rights of prisoners.
Mazari recently presented a report before the court which revealed that 245 ill prisoners across Pakistan await medical treatment as their cases remain pending before provincial home departments.
According to the report, as many as 5,189 prisoners across the country were infected with lethal diseases such as HIV/Aids or Hepatitis C. Of these, 425 were infected with HIV/Aids while some 1,832 were suffering different forms of hepatitis.
It pointed to the lack of medical equipment and ambulances, untrained prison staff and inadequate coordination with health departments as major reasons behind these cases.

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