Criminal Justice System of Pakistan


A society is a collection of individuals and the individuals always work for the prosperity of the society. For this purpose, society must have control over its members. Any individual who deviates from the established norms may cause a threat to its welfare. This is possible through social control and the criminal justice system.

Social Control is a mechanism through which a society maintains a normative social system.

The individual learns social norms and these norms become a part of his personality in the long run through the process of socialization.

Socialization is a process by which a growing child learns the values of his own group, and of other larger groups in society. He also comes to know the right and proper ways to do something.

What is Criminal Justice System

The Criminal Justice System is a set of rules and principles which are applied to convicted persons when they commit an offense.

The purpose of the criminal justice system is to maintain peace, eradicate crimes from society, and deliver justice to the victims.

Read More: What are different types of crime

Characteristics of Criminal Justice System

The characteristics of the criminal justice system are the following;

  • The criminal justice system is the most important part of any society throughout the world.
  • The criminal justice system creates deterrence in society.
  • The criminal justice system tells us the punishments for the offenders.
  • The criminal justice system also illustrates the methods to punish criminals in an effective way.

What will happen without a criminal justice system

Without a proper criminal justice system, society or any country cannot survive for a long time.

Modern Criminal Justice System

In this modern era, the criminal justice system of the world is comprised of THREE  main institutions.

1. Police
2. Prosecution
3. Judiciary

Criminal Justice System in Pakistan

The criminal justice system of Pakistan is also based on the three institutions which are mentioned above. 

If we talk about the past then there were only two institutions before 2007, namely Police & Judiciary. There was no separate Prosecution department in Pakistan. But after 2007, every province established its own independent departments of prosecution. 

The prosecution department in Pakistan is still not performing its duty well.

Problems in Pakistan’s criminal justice system

The criminal justice system of Pakistan is facing serious problems nowadays. It has become outdated and ineffective. An influential and wealthy person finds it very easy to escape from the police after committing any sort of crime. He can easily get a clean chit from the court due to the presence of various loopholes in Pakistan’s Criminal Justice System.

This has resulted in the loss of confidence of the people and they try to solve their disputes outside the police station.

1. Police

The Police or the Investigating Agency is the basic department in almost every criminal justice system of the world. In Pakistan, the criminal justice system also starts with the Police department. 

The basic purpose of the Police department is to protect the interests of citizens. Its purpose is to provide security to the people of the country. Unfortunately, the police department is not performing its function as it should be.

The police department is one of the most corrupt departments in Pakistan. Due to this, an ordinary citizen hates as well as avoids going to the police station. They do not visit the police stations even if the matter is serious.

Thus the basic root cause of the failure of Pakistan’s Criminal Justice system is the Police Department. The reason is that the department of police lacks a specialized and well-trained unit that can investigate the matter in a well-defined manner. The officers in the police department have low salaries, they are non-professional and non-trained. Due to this, there are maximum chances for evidence to be destroyed at the initial stage.

2. Prosecution

Before 2007, there were no separate Prosecution departments in Pakistan. However, a specific branch of police performs the functions of Prosecution on behalf of the state. The Provincial Governments established prosecution departments but they are non-functional, ineffective, and toothless.

Even a Prosecutor in Pakistan is unable to enjoy adequate powers. It has been considered that a Prosecutor is sandwiched between two powerful and authoritative institutions of the country. These two institutions are Police and Judiciary. These institutions are the most corrupt institutions. 

The reason is that he cannot give directions to the Investigating Officer to properly perform his duty during the investigation. He can only pass through the report once the investigation is completed. And it is mentioned above that the investigating officer has destroyed most of the pieces of the evidence by that time.

The investigation officers have to work without proper resources due to which they cannot perform their duty well. It makes the prosecution department dull.

3. Judiciary

Judges are of great importance in the criminal justice system of a country. The department of the judiciary is highly paid in Pakistan and it enjoys great resources as well. The government has spent a lot of money and resources on this branch.

It is to be noted that the acquittal rate in Pakistan is about 80%.

The reasons for the inefficiency of the Courts in Pakistan’s Criminal Justice System are the following.

  1. In most cases, evidence is destroyed by the investigation officer during the investigation.
  2. The Lawyer Bar Councils have so much power that the case is usually decided by the lawyers. They put pressure on the Judge to prolong the case even for months or years. 
  3. A wealthy person can easily escape from the police after committing a crime. He can easily get a clean chit from the courts by adopting different tactics.


The Criminal Justice System in Pakistan is not efficient and it is not working its duty well. Due to this reason, it is losing the confidence of people. 

The Criminal Justice System of Pakistan demands special attention from the government because without resources, society or a country can survive but without justice, it is impossible to survive.

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