By Ishaq Tanoli
KARACHI: A district and sessions judge recorded on Tuesday the testimony of the investigation officer of the Nasima Lubano gang-rape case.
Ali Hasan, Abdul Jabbar, Shah Zado, Bashir Ahmed, Anwar Hussain, Khadim Hussain, Abdul Sattar and Shah Baig along with their absconding accomplices have been charged with kidnapping 18-year-old Naseema Lubano from her house in Ghotki district in Jan 2007 and subjecting her to a sexual assault.
The investigation officer, Sub-Inspector Aftab Farooqui, deposed that the investigation of the case was assigned to him on Jan 27, 2007 and he sent the victim to hospital for her medical examination.
He said that he along with two witnesses, Meharab and Rajib Ali, inspected the house of one of the accused, Abdul Sattar, where the incident was taken place, and recovered a scissor at the crime-scene.
The IO testified that he recorded the statements of prosecution witnesses under Section 161 of the criminal procedure code, adding that he also produced eyewitnesses, Jamaluddin and Sardar, and the victim before Judicial Magistrate Islam-ul-Haq who recorded their statements under Section 164 of the CrPC on Feb 7, 2007.
He concluded that he arrested the accused in Feb 2007 and filed a charge-sheet against them.
The public prosecutor, Abdul Maroof, conducted the examination-in-chief of the IO.
During the cross-examination, the defence counsel, Iqbal Shah, who is representing all the accused, suggested the IO that it was a bogus case, he conducted a defective investigation and also recording a false statement against the accused persons. However, the IO replied in the negative.
District and Sessions Judge (south) Fahim Ahmed Siddiqui summoned Judicial Magistrate Islam-ul-Haq, directing him to record his evidence on Oct 17.
A case (FIR 07/07) was registered under Section 10(4), the Offence of Zina (Enforcement of Hudood) Ordinance, 1979, Sections 354-A, 452, 147, 337-A(i) and 337-F(i) of the Pakistan Penal Code at the Ubaro police station on the complaint of the victim’s father. Later, Section 10(4), the Offence of Zina (Enforcement of Hudood) Ordinance, 1979, was replaced with the new Section, 376-B, of the Protection of Women (Criminal Laws Amendment), Act, 2006.
On Feb 1, 2007, the police had arrested the accused, Loung Khan, Abdul Jabbar, Abdul Sattar, Ali Hasan, Shah Zada, Bashir Ahmed and Anwar Hussain. Later, accused Khadim Hussain and Shah Baig were also apprehended while Manawar Hussain and Moro Zada were absconding in the case. An aged accused, Loung Khan, was released on bail. However, he was killed in a road mishap and the SHO of the Ubaro police station had submitted his death certification in court. All the arrested accused persons are in judicial custody.
Initially, the case was tried in Mirpur Mathelo court. However, the Sindh High Court had transferred the case to a district and session court (south) in Karachi on the request of the victim’s father.