Rape victim narrates ordeal to police; civil society protests

Pakistan on 19 September 2013
Location : Lahore, Pakistan | Source : Daily Times.

LAHORE: Police succeeded on Thursday in recording statement of a five-year-old rape victim, through her parents at ICU ward Services Hospital.

However, the authorities are still unable to approach and identify the main accused of the case even after the lapse of seven days of the incident.

According to statement of girl, she was playing outside her home with her two and a half year old cousin, Ahmad, when three unknown persons in a white car arrived and sat both the children into the car. She narrated that the unidentified persons offered her ice-cream and snacks to other cousin and then brought in to an empty house. “I don’t remember what happened next,” she hastened to add.

Police investigating team said they will try to show the girl sketches of suspects if she could identify any one of them. The team further started the probe about white car in the neighbourhood of girl’s residential area. The police also took more people in the interrogation and DNA test reports are also awaited for further clues. 

However, police said they would not confirm any thing until the final suspect was identified. 

Meanwhile, the senior doctors of Services Hospital briefed the media about health of girl and said she was recovering very quickly and started coming back towards a normal life. They said the girl was having conversation with her parents, relatives and cousins. Doctors said they were also trying to relax her mind as it would help her to move out of mental depression. They added that she was being provided best treatment under the supervision of senior doctors. 

However, civil society, non government organisations (NGOs) and human rights organisations organised a candle light vigil for the health of rape victim. They protested against the suspects and demanded immediate arrest of suspects involved in this heinous crime at Charing Cross, opposite to Punjab Assembly. 

The protesters holding placards inscribed with demands, “Arrest and hang culprits”, “Save the girl, save the world”, “Provide safety and security to minor”, “No more violence” and many others. The protesters chanted slogans against the government and authorities for not arresting suspects even after seven days of incident. They also condemned the increasing rape incidents with minors. NGOs under the banner Mumkin Alliance and Civil Society Network Pakistan for Human Rights, including Aurat Foundation, Human Rights Commission of Pakistan (HRCP), Shirkat Gah Women Resource Center, South Asia Partnership Pakistan (SAP PK), Strengthening Participatory Organization (SPO), WAR against Rape, Women Workers Helpline (WWHL) and Women in Struggle for Empowerment (WISE) staged the protest. Speaking at a protest rally, Shazia Shaheen of Mumkin Alliance said more than ten cases of rape against minor girls had come to the limelight across the province in the last 10 days. She demanded of the Punjab government and concerned department to arrest the original culprit as soon as possible and punish him to so as to prevent such horrible crimes in future. 

WWHL’s Azra Shaad was of the view that there was a need to implement law against violence and it was necessary that culprits of recent incidents should strictly be punished. 

Bushra Khaliq of WISE said the system of police should be improved for violence against women and girls cases as sometimes police disturb the whole case by patronising the suspects. “Therefore provincial government should bring improvement in police culture” she added. Bushra further demanded that provincial government should set up a cell against sexual crimes which should immediate provide speedy justice to rape victims. 

President Civil Society Network Abdullah Malik said media, civil society, teachers, scholars and writers should play their role in creating awareness in society. He also criticised police’s investigating system and said it provide an easy way for criminals. 

He suggested government that violence against children and especially girls should be dealt in anti terrorism courts.

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