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Mukhtaran Mai to file review plea in SC

* Aitzaz says plea will contain full critique of court’s judgement

LAHORE: Mukhtaran Mai, a gang rape victim, will file a review petition in the Supreme Court against its April 21 verdict of acquitting five of the six accused in the case.

The apex court had, upheld the Lahore High Court’s (LHC) verdict in the Mai gang rape case and acquitted all the accused except one Abdul Khaliq.
In a press release issued on Saturday, Mai’s counsel, Chaudhry Aitzaz Ahsan, said they would go for a review of the case. He said after his consultation with Mai, they had decided to file a review petition in the apex court against its judgement of April 21.

The counsel said he was disappointed over the court’s ruling. He was of the view that the decision needed to be reviewed. He claimed that in drawing their conclusions, the majority judges had disregarded cogent evidence and failed to notice actual material on record and the facts proved thereby.
Aitzaz added that the majority judgement was manifestly flawed and was not even based on the evidence available on record. He said the judges had also failed to take notice of the social backdrop, which was established on record itself, and in the context of which the horrendous crime of gang rape was committed, reported and investigated.

The counsel further said the judges had misread evidence which they had adverted to. “We are grateful to the people, media, civil society and particularly women of Pakistan for their committed support in this critical hour,” he added.
About the review petition, Aitzaz said it would contain a full critique of the judgement and there was no need for him to make any other comments in media on the subject.

In 2002, Mai was sentenced to be gang raped by a tribal council in Punjab as punishment for her younger brother’s alleged affair with a woman from a powerful clan. After the trial by an anti-terrorism court, six men were sentenced to death for the rape, while eight others were acquitted. Later, the LHC had acquitted five of them and reduced the death sentence of one accused Abdul Khaliq to life imprisonment.

Source: Daily Times


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