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National Assembly panel calls for sacking child beater’s spouse

ISLAMABAD: The National Assembly Standing Committee on Human Rights has demanded that the government remove the judge whose wife allegedly brutalized a minor child in Sargodha.

The standing committee, which met on Thursday with Dr. Mahreen Razzaq Bhutto presiding in the chair, was briefed about the incident by the National Commission on the Rights of Child (NCRC) chairperson.

The NCRC chief told the committee that the child, who served as a maid at the house of the jurist, was allegedly tortured by the judge’s spouse. She said the incident was reported in the media on July 26.

“Initially the FIR [first information report] was very weak but based on the medico-legal report some more sections were added to the FIR to strengthen the case,” she added.

The Islamabad police chief endorsed the NCRC chairman’s statement.

Referring to Articles 3, 11, 23, 25-A, 35, and 37 (a) of the Constitution, the committee chairperson said the sad incident was a clear violation of human rights. “Those responsible deserve maximum punishment.”

She urged the Ministry of Law and Justice to take action against the judge given the judicial code of conduct. “Take all possible steps for penal action against the civil judge and submit a report to the committee,” she said.

The committee directed the Islamabad deputy inspector general to conduct an impartial inquiry and finalize a report while ignoring all pressures and submit it to the committee as soon as possible

The committee further directed the Human Rights Ministry to give its opinion on a draft policy—prepared by the NCRC—at the next meeting of the panel on August 7.

PML-N Senior Vice President Maryam Nawaz on Thursday visited the Lahore General Hospital to meet Rizwana. Speaking to the media on the occasion, Maryam expressed concern over the child’s deteriorating condition.

She said the child had suffered severe acid burns, resulting in large wounds. The suspects violently broke Rizwana’s arms and also smashed her teeth, she noted. According to the PML-N leader, the young girl revealed that she was beaten with sticks, and her head was smashed against a wall.

“These children are our future, and it is the state’s and our responsibility to protect and ensure their education and upbringing,” she added. “It is painful for me to know that there are many Rizwanas who remain silent due to fear, and no one is aware of the atrocities they endure.”

Rizwana, a housemaid, employed by a civil judge was brought to Sargodha’s District Headquarters Hospital on July 24 in critical condition reportedly with wounds on her face, head, and body that were said to have been caused by a “blunt weapon”. The girl also bore burn marks on her body.

She was later shifted to the intensive care unit (ICU) at the Lahore General Hospital, with doctors fearing for the teen’s life.

Source: The Express Tribune