KASUR: With their faces painted black and hair cut, three women were forced to parade semi-naked in a Phoolnagar village by a mob on charges of prostitution on Sunday night.
When a civil court set them at liberty on Monday, a large number of people blocked the national highway for about one-and-a-half hours.
Denying prostitution charges, the aggrieved women said the motive behind the entire episode was political rivalry and litigation over property dispute. One of them said that her 13 years old daughter had been missing since Sunday night.
Reports said that Jamber Kalan union council nazim Muhammad Ilyas Khan and Abdul Sattar along with some 200 villagers had raided the alleged brothel of former councilor Shahnaz alias Sarajan Bibi and recovered her, Azra and Shabana while two men managed to escape.
The charged crowd also brought out the households and set them ablaze before humiliating the women in full public view. The women were finally handed over to the Phoolnagar police on Sunday night.
On Monday, the accused women were produced before a Pattoki court from where they got the bail.
The court scolded investigation officer Bashir Ahmed for giving divergent statements. The IO stated that he along with a police party raided the alleged brothel, but later he changed his statement and said that villagers had handed over the women to police. The court ordered registration of a case under section 496 of the PPC.
Hearing about the release of women, more than 500 villagers gathered at Ada Jamber Kalan and blocked the Multan Road to protest the court decision and demanded immediate arrest of the accused women.
SP (investigation) Waqas Ahmed along with a police team reached the spot and succeeded in dispersing the protesters.
It is learnt that accused Shahnaz has a land dispute with former TMA chairman Rana Naseeruddin. The alleged brothel is said to be the disputed property.