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Teenage girl rescued from sex trade

By: Munawer Azeem

ISLAMABAD: Police have rescued a teenage girl from the illegal custody of a couple who were planning to sell her in Afghanistan, police said on Monday. The recovery of Shahina came after she made a call to Rescue-15 from her detention place and sought police help.

Investigation officer SI Anis Akbar told Dawn that Rescue-15 informed Shahzad Town police that a girl had been detained by a couple in a house at Sanam Chowk and was seeking help for her release. In response, a police team raided the house and recovered her and took the couple into custody.

In her statement, Shahina told police that she had been sold thrice and the couple, Jamila and Kareem, was her last buyers. She said Ikram, a native of Charsadda, had brought Shahina to Rawalpindi and sold her to them some 19 days back.

She alleged they used her as sex worker, and Kareem raped her several times. Shahina said she was first kidnapped by Akram in Shabqadar while she was going to school. He dragged her in a car and made her unconscious. When she regained her consciousness she found herself locked in a room.

Akram made Shahina addict by giving her narcotics. He continued to rape her during her stay with him and later sold her to Rashid for Rs60,000. Later, Ikram bought Shahina for Rs55,000 and brought her to Rawalpindi. Shahina said the couple wanted to sell her in Afghanistan, but somehow she came to know about their planning and luckily got a chance to inform Rescue-15 about their move.

The police have registered a case against the couple under sections 371-A (selling person for purposes of prostitution, etc), 371-B (buying person for purposes of prostitution, etc) and 376 (punishment for rape). During investigation, Jamila and Kareem told the police that they had recently been shifted from Peshawar to Islamabad to extend their illegal business they had been running for many years. They would buy girls from different sources, including sex traders and kidnappers, the IO added.

The IO said that the report about the disappearance of the girl had also been filed with Shabqadr police, but the case was yet to be registered. Kareem and Jamila said after purchasing the girls, they sold them in different countries, especially in Afghanistan.

Both were produced in the court from where they were given into police custody for interrogation to know the whereabouts of their accomplices. After getting information, the girl’s family came to Islamabad from Shabqadar and took her to home, the IO said.

He said Shahina belonged to an educated family and one of his brothers was a doctor and others were employed at a pharmaceutical company. (Names of the victim and accused have been changed to hide their identity)