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Social reintegration of offenders : the role of the probation service in North West Frontier Province, Pakistan

Hussain, Basharat


Basharat Hussain


Bankole, 1954 Cole

A. Keith Bottomley


This thesis examines the role of the probation system in the social reintegration of offenders in NWFP, Pakistan. Probation is the punishment most widely associated with rehabilitation and helping offenders to lead law-abiding lives. The probation system in Pakistan has a colonial origin. The Probation Ordinance of 1960 has its origins in the Criminal Procedure Code, 1898 (Amended 1923) passed into law by the British Colonial government. The passing of the probation law in 1960 was part of General Ayub Khan's attempt to modernise Pakistan. The central argument of this thesis is that the meaning of punishment changes when it is taken out of its cultural setting. The punishment of probation has no equivalent in Pakistani culture. Throughout this study, it was found that probation was perceived differently by the probation officers in the Reclamation and Probation Department (RPD) of NWFP Pakistan, the judicial magistrates who are empowered to grant probation orders and the offenders placed on probation. The result is a deluded system which was founded upon the rehabilitation ideal but which tries to offer an 'advice, assist and befriend' service. The empirical data showed that even that support was not provided. Probation officers measured their success in terms of how many people they were able to persuade judicial magistrates to release to them on probation. This made their job resemble that of the 19th century missionaries in England – 'saving souls'. It is argued that the problems of the RPD are due to lack of political support for the probation service in Pakistan, evidenced by its lack of identity and infrastructure. This has meant that the RPD has not 'evolved' enough to be able to meet its goals of rehabilitation and reintegration of offenders.


Hussain, B. (2009). Social reintegration of offenders : the role of the probation service in North West Frontier Province, Pakistan. (Thesis). University of Hull. Retrieved from

Thesis Type Thesis
Deposit Date Aug 16, 2011
Publicly Available Date Feb 22, 2023
Keywords Social sciences
Public URL
Additional Information Department of Social Sciences, The University of Hull
Award Date Nov 1, 2009


Thesis (1.6 Mb)

Copyright Statement
© 2009 Hussain, Basharat. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced without the written permission of the copyright holder.

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