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Two jirgas decide fate of four girls

SHIKARPUR/SUKKUR: An illegal tribal court (jirga) on Sunday ordered a man to give in marriage his two minor sisters and a minor niece to the nephews of his rival, a close relative, in order a settle a case of enmity over illicit relations.

The losing side was also asked to pay a fine of Rs200,000 to the aggrieved party and another amount of Rs50,000 to the police.

The jirga, headed by tribal elder Abdul Wahab Jatoi, was convened in Momin Jatoi village of Lakhi Ghulam Shah taluka.

Police said they had yet to determine whether the place where the jirga was held fell within the remit of Daim Malik or Rustam police station.

Shikarpur SSP Parvez Chandio, however, ordered registration of a case against all those involved in the holding of the illegal jirga.

He also asked the Lakhi DSP to immediately take the three girls into custody.

According to the jirga proceedings, complainant Waheed Jatoi accused his relative, Amanullah Jatoi, of maintaining illicit relations with his wife.

The woman was killed by her husband (under the custom of Karo-kari) about four months ago but Amanullah Jatoi went
into hiding to escape the same fate, the jirga heard.

Amanullah Jatoi’s side at the jirga defended him but he was found guilty. He and his family were ordered to promise giving away his two sisters, Rabia and Sabiha, and a niece, Safia, to the aggrieved party for marriage — after they reach the age of puberty — to the three sons of Waheed Jatoi.

All the three girls are aged between six and eight years while the names and age of their would-be grooms were not declared.

The jirga decree was given under ‘Sang Chatti’, another hated custom.

Both sides accepted the Jirga decree and Waheed Jatoi was paid Rs100,000 of the Rs200,000 fine money.

DSP Asadullah Bhatti of Lakhi Ghulam Shah taluka has been appointed investigation officer with the task of arresting all those involved in the holding of the jirga and taking into custody the minors to be given away to Waheed Jatoi’s family under Sang Chatti.

He has also been asked to register a murder case against Waheed Jatoi on behalf of the state and submit his report on the whole affair to the SSP within the next 48 hours.

Another jirga in Pir Jo Goth

Another tribal court headed by Rahib Odh heard a case of a freewill marriage in Pir Jo Goth in Khairpur district on Monday evening.

The jirga ordered a 13-year-old girl, Fauzia, daughter of Wazir Odh, to be married to a 50-year-old man, Ajan Odh, father of seven children. The girl was handed over to the groom as soon as the jirga concluded its proceedings.

It was said that both parties involved in the matter belonged to the Hindu community.

The jirga was told that Jawed Odh and Veena Odh had contracted a freewill marriage about four months back.

Although the groom and the bride belonged to the same community and tribe, their marriage was not accepted by their families and the community, the girl’s father, Wazir Odh, and brother Manthar Odh told the media.

The groom was forced to take the case to the jirga or else they would be killed under the custom of Karo-kari. Accordingly, he was made to accept the jirga decree.

No case was registered at the police station concerned till late Monday night.

SSP Khairpur Irfan Mukhtiar Bhutto told Dawn that he had issued orders to the Pir Jo Goth police station to investigate the matter, register a case on behalf of the state, arrest the head and members of the illegal jirga and submit a report to him within the next 24 hours.