By: M. Waqar Bhatti
Karachi: Police have arrested a female relative and a neighbour in the rape and murder case of a 13-year-old girl whose body was found at the Clifton beach on Thursday.
A woman named Shahida (identified as Shama Perveen by other sources) who the police say is a relative of the victim’s mother and had a property dispute with her family, kidnapped the girl from her school on Tuesday with the help of a neighbour, Faisal Seraiki.
A senior police official told The News that the woman was unable to settle a property dispute with the girl’s family. Therefore, she wanted to compel the girl’s family into paying her money by kidnapping her. To carry out her plan, she sough the help of Faisal, the girl’s neighbour.
“As the girl had seen her captors, they decided to kill her. Faisal raped her before suffocating her to death,” the police official said.
He added that another person involved in the kidnapping and murder was still at large, but would be arrested soon.
A police investigator told The News that after kidnapping the girl from school, Faisal took her to Surjani Town and made ransom calls to her parents.
When the parents refused to pay the money, the captors killed her.
Faisal took the body in his car to the Clifton beach, dumped it there, and returned home.
The investigator said that senior police officials were likely to inform the media about the arrests at a press conference on Saturday (today).
The registration of the private school, from where the 13-year-old girl was abducted and later found dead at the beach, has been cancelled.
According to a statement issued on Friday, the education ministry cancelled the registration of Rose Season Grammar School in Azizabad following the directives of Sindh Education and Literacy Minister Nisar Khuhro.
All public and private sector schools have been directed to beef up security and not to hand over students to anyone except blood relatives.
The administrations of all private sector schools have been ordered to collect data of van drivers and provide it to their respective police stations to prevent any untoward incident even after school timings.
As a general practice, school transporters operate independently from private schools. At some schools, a system of cards for parents and drivers who come to pick small children is prevalent.
Any private school which fails to follow the instructions will have its registration cancelation and strict action will be taken against the administration of public sector schools.
On September 26, the body of the girl still clad in her school uniform was found at the Clifton beach. The student had been taken away from her school two days earlier by a burka-clad woman on the pretext that the girl’s mother was ill.
To investigate the incident, a three-member committee headed by Education Inspection Deputy Director Abdul Sattar has been constituted and will file a report within two days. Private Schools Management Association Assistant Director Abdul Razzak and Karachi ADEO Ali Akbar Memon are the other members.
The committee has been assigned to find out who handed over the student to an unknown woman. The owner and the school administration officials will also be questioned.
The education ministry vowed to take extraordinary measures to prevent any such incidents in the future.
CM orders judicial probe
Taking cognizance of the abduction and murder of the schoolgirl, Sindh Chief Minister Syed Qaim Ali Shah ordered a judicial inquiry into the heinous crime through a retired judge of the Sindh High Court or a sessions judge.
Widespread condemnation poured in from the cross section of society against the abduction of the teenaged girl from her school, who was the lone child of her parents.
“Taking cognizance of the abduction and killing of the teenaged girl after sexual assault, the chief minister has ordered a judicial probe into the crime through a retired judge of the Sindh High Court or a sessions judge,” Adviser to Sindh CM Waqar Mehdi told The News.
He said a decision to this affect was taken by Syed Qaim Ali Shah keeping in view the growing incidents of violence against children in the country and to satisfy the family and relatives of the deceased girl, as some of them have expressed dissatisfaction over the police probe.
“The police, however, would continue their probe and make all out efforts to nab the culprits involved in the brutal act,” he said, adding that the objective of the judicial probe would be to ascertain the facts and provide guidelines to the investigators.
In this regard, the Sindh Home
Department would soon issue a notification, mentioning the name of the
retired judge, either from Sindh High Court or sessions court, to be appointed for conducting the judicial probe, he added.
Waqar Mehdi, who is also the spokesman for the chief minister, claimed that the report of the judicial inquiry would also be made public and nothing would be kept hidden from the masses.
Shehla Raza visits bereaved family
Meanwhile, Deputy Speaker Sindh Assembly Shehla Raza visited the parents of unfortunate girl and offered condolence to them.
Strongly condemning this brutal act, Shehla said that the Sindh government and law enforcing agencies have taken strong notice of the incident and a team of senior police officers was investigating this gruesome incident. She assured the family and relatives of the deceased teenager that the culprits behind her brutal murder would be taken to task and exemplary punishment would be awarded to them through legal means.