ISLAMABAD: Gross violations of human rights were recorded in the year 2005 and a record number of 706 people committed suicide due to adverse circumstances, while 209 women were killed in the name of ‘honour,’ out of a total of 393 women killed in the past year. According to data obtained from the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan (HRCP), several cases of murder, abduction, rape, police torture, harassment, illegal detention, suicides and bonded labour were reported throughout the year, painting a bleak picture of the human rights situation in the country.Unemployment, financial issues and marital problems were the leading causes among the 706 suicides recorded. According to the statistics, 210 people killed themselves over domestic problems; 76 over financial troubles, 79 because of unemployment and 114 because of marital problems. There was a prevailing resentment against inflation and the increase in prices of commodities of everyday use, especially petroleum products, which continued to rise, despite the lowering of oil prices in the international market. The government was accused of neglecting the recommendations of the parliamentary sub-committee on petroleum products, which detected overcharging worth billions of rupees on petroleum products.Violence against women, rape and child abuse continued to be serious problems in Pakistan, along with the trafficking of women and children for slavery and prostitution. Women were especially victimised and a total of 393 deaths were reported throughout the country, 209 out of which were attributed to honour killing and karo kari. Although the government has criticised the practice, it continues to threaten women in Pakistan.In 2005, 382 women were abducted, 115 of whom were raped. Similarly, the HRCP recorded 136 gang rapes, 137 rapes, only 49 of which registered with police. Six hundred and thirty bonded labourers, mostly ‘haris’ (peasants) were freed from bonded labour during the last year. The Human Rights Commission of Pakistan received 156 complaints from different ‘haris,’ which were forwarded to the authorities that secured their release.Prison conditions continued to be extremely poor and police continued to detain citizens arbitrarily. Sectarian killings remained a problem. In 2005, about 64 people were killed and 169 were injured in incidents of sectarian violence.The HRCP also claimed that several cases of illegal detention, police torture and death-during-custody by police and jail officials went unreported. Almost 188 people were killed in encounters, only five of whom were policemen.