Thursday, July 26, 2012

Torture breeds hatred that’s hard to heal

Hatred against law enforcement agencies in the hearts of political and civil right activists is nothing new in Pakistan, because, activists worth their salt in this country have been, time and again, systemically tortured by law enforcement agencies.
In the long chequered history of Pakistan, political and social workers were not only physically abused as a matter of routine, but were psychologically tortured as well. As one of the leading psychiatrists of the country puts it, “all torture is psychological,” because the ramifications of torture go deep beneath the skin.
 To name a few prominent names, ex-deputy speaker Sindh Assembly Rahila Tiwana, human rights activist Abdul Wahab Baloch, ex-NationalStudents Federation leader Dr. Rasheed Hasan Khan, and many leftist activists were tortured both physically and psychologically. According to experts, the trauma and scar of torture remain for life - unless the victim undergoes psychotherapy. “Torture is a phenomenon that does not leave physical scars forever, but the imprints of torture basically impact the personality of the victim,” said senior psychiatrist Dr Syed Ali Wasif. “It can be physical during interrogation or psychological stress enforced subtly in the form of a life threat.”

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