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Protest against delay in ‘rape’ case registration

SAHIWAL, Sept 9: Around 60 or so people, including an alleged rape victim and her family members, demonstrated in front of the local press club and the DPO’s office here on Tuesday to protest Yousafwala police’s reluctance to register an FIR despite the lapse of 18 days after the incident.

The DPO assured demonstrators that an FIR would be registered on which the Yousafwala police registered the FIR later in the afternoon. The FIR, however, did not contain rape charges.

According to details, 15-year-old (H), daughter of a labourer, of Chak 51/5-L, Yousafwala, was going to nearby fields to collect fodder at around 3pm on Aug 22 when three men riding on motorbike came and intercepted her.

The assailants, including Muhammad Khan, kidnapped her and took her to an undisclosed location in Gamber jungle near Okara where they raped her. However, the girl fled from the outhouse where she was detained and reached home.

Her father and the local nazim took the girl to Yousafwala police station and asked SHO Naveed Kiani to register a case. Though the police visited the crime scene and recorded the statements of witnesses, including the victim, it did not register the case. Instead, the SHO asked the complainant to visit the DPO’s office the next day.

“When the victim reached the DPO’s office the following day, the SHO took the victim to an ASP’s office and recorded her statement afresh after threatening her with dire consequences,” Nazim Awais Ali Baloch told Dawn.

The SHO later informed the victim’s father that his girl had not been raped. He also showed him the statement given by the victim and declined to register the FIR.

The victim, however, got her medically examined on Aug 26 from the DHQ Hospital. The family also approached the ASP and the DSP concerned, but to no avail.

On Tuesday, the villagers held a demonstration to press for registration of a case against the suspects.

Talking to Dawn, a demonstrator, Sughran Bibi, accused the SHO of taking Rs150,000 bribe from rape suspects. “That’s why he is not registering the case,” she added.

The DPO called victim’s father and heard him. Later, he ordered registration of an FIR on which Yousafwala police registered FIR No 327/08 under Section 365/354 of the Pakistan Penal Code on Tuesday afternoon.

Talking to Dawn, SHO Kiyani said: “I still believe this is a fake case. The girl has not been raped.” No arrest has been made so far.
Source: Dawn

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