Angered residents of the Essa Nagri area in Gulshan-e-Iqbal held an hours-long protest on Sunday on the main University Road, following the recovery of the body of an abducted minor girl who had been killed after being raped.
The culprits had even torched her body so that it could not be identified and dumped it into a vacant plot in the area. Meanwhile, police claimed to have taken one of the neighbours of the victim into custody for his alleged involvement in the abduction, rape and murder of the girl.
The family ended the protest after giving a three-day ultimatum to the government and police and warned of holding another major protest if the real culprits were not traced and arrested within three days.
The minor girl was kidnapped a couple of days ago and her body bearing torture marks was found in the early hours of Sunday near her residence in the Essa Nagri area that falls within the jurisdiction of the PIB Colony police station.
The body was shifted to Jinnah Postgraduate Medical Centre where the initial post-mortem report suggested that the girl had been sexually assaulted and that she had died due to head injuries.
Following the incident, the parents and family members of the victim gathered near Hassan Square at around 12 noon and held a protest on University Road. Later, a large number of their relatives and neighbours also joined the protest. The protesters blocked the flow of traffic for hours from Hassan Square to New Town.
Videos of the protest shared on social media also showed some protesters carrying sticks and asking the commuters to take alternative routes. Police officials tried to persuade the protesters multiple times to end the protest but they did not listen.
The funeral prayers for the victim were also offered during the protest after Zuhr prayers. She was then laid to rest at a graveyard in Baldia Town. The protest, however, continued after the funeral prayers and burial.
The victim’s paternal uncle told the media that the girl’s father was a rickshaw driver. He added that his five-year-old niece was kidnapped near her residence on Friday at around 7am when she had left her home to buy biscuits from a nearby shop and since then her whereabouts had been unknown until her body was found in a garbage dump in a plot.
The uncle explained that unidentified persons had first kidnapped her and then murdered her after subjecting her to rape. Later, they set her body on fire so that she could not be identified.
A heavy contingent of the law enforcers, including police and the Rangers, reached the protest site to pacify the protesters. They held negotiations with the girl’s family and assured them of their full cooperation.
Police also told the protesters that they had arrested a suspect, Nawaz, for his alleged involvement in the incident. According to PIB Colony SHO Shakir Hsusain, the suspect’s DNA samples had been sent to a laboratory in the University of Karachi to ascertain his involvement in the crime.
The officer said police were recording the statements of the girl’s family members, relatives and neighbours and they were also trying to obtain CCTV footage. The protesters dispersed at 6pm in the evening after the law enforcers held successful negotiations with them. They, however, gave a three-day deadline to the government and police to arrest the real culprits. A case has been registered and further investigations are under way.
Newspaper: The News