By: Owais Jafri
MULTAN: An 18-year-old girl suspected of having an affair was burnt allegedly by her brothers in Khanewal on Thursday. She was taken to Nishtar Hospital, where she was reported to be in critical condition.
Police said her brothers have denied the allegations. They said she had tried to commit suicide.
A case has been registered against four people. The eldest of the brothers was detained for a while. The suspects have been told not to leave town until investigations are completed, police said.
The only sister of four brothers, police said the girl was tied to a tree at her home in Chak 151/10-R in Jahanian and set on fire.
Police said some neighbours rushed to her rescue on hearing her cries and found the house locked. They said one of her brothers, Imran alias Langra, came to the door and told them to leave saying “it is a family matter”.
A few hours later, police said, they were informed by a dispenser in the neighbourhood, Abdur Rehman, that the men had called to the house and asked him to give the girl an injection so that she should stop shouting. He said they did not mention their intentions of setting the girl on fire. He said he refused to give her the injection and left. He said shortly after he had left the house, he heard the girl’s screams. The entire neighbourhood gathered in front of the house.
He said he later learnt that they had also called a quack, who, too, fled on seeing the girl tied to the tree.
Police eventually broke into the house and took the girl to the Khanewal district headquarters hospital. She was later sent to the burn unit at Nishtar Hospital in Multan. Doctors treating her said she had 70 per cent burns.
Jahanian Station House Officer Asif Shaheen said that initial investigations had revealed that one of the brothers had found her talking over a cell phone on Wednesday night. They said they had tied her to the tree in the night and left here there overnight. On Thursday morning, they said, some neighbours who had seen them beating her tried to intervene, but were turned away.
Police said Imran, the eldest brother, was detained for some time. He told police that the girl had tried to commit suicide. He said she had been asking them (brothers) for new clothes and accessories, which, he said, they could not afford.
Police said they had traced robbery cases against the brothers. They said Imran was shot by police while fleeing after a robbery. He had lost his leg in the shooting.
The SHO said they had added an anti-terrorism section in the FIR. He said further investigation was underway.