Home South Asia Pakistan Gang rape silenced: An ugly face of Pakistan’s criminal justice system

Gang rape silenced: An ugly face of Pakistan’s criminal justice system

A young girl who was allegedly raped by three policemen and one civilian in Pindi has decided to change her statement before the court.

rape

News Analysis |

According to local media reports, the ‘victim’ girl has pleaded the court for recording her statement again in the gang-rape case as her previous statement was recorded ‘under pressure’. She said, “I had recorded my statement under pressure of police, non-governmental organization (NGO) and media. I had not nominated police officials, who were arrested in the case, as I didn’t even know them.”

The victim also made it clear how she was not under any pressure anymore and willing to record a new statement. “I am giving my statement under no such pressure now. I have no objection if the court grants bail to them [policemen],” she added.

SP Saddar stated that the affected girl had ‘correctly identified’ the accused persons which led to the DNA test of the complainant and the arrested persons.

The arrested policemen were also produced before court during the hearing after the completion of physical remand. However, the civil judge has sent accused policemen on judicial remand again over the request of Rawalpindi police department. The initial medial report of the victim confirmed rape.

Police Shall Probe the Matter

Superintendent Police, (SP) Saddar Division, held a press conference regarding the development of the gang rape case reported in the vicinity of Rawat police station. The police officer told media that a case was filed over the complaint of Rafia Azam against four accused persons, whereas, three police officials, including Rashid Minhas, Muhammad Azam, Muhammad Naseer, and a driver, were arrested.

Read more: Minor girl’s rape, murder in Ramzan shocks nation

SP Saddar stated that the affected girl had ‘correctly identified’ the accused persons which led to the DNA test of the complainant and the arrested persons. He later added that the report of the DNA test was not received as yet.

He said, “The complainant has given a statement in court that the accused persons were not involved in the rape. However, the police department will complete its legal requirement to dig out facts. We will also investigate whether the complainant was pressurized [to change her statement] or not.”

Case History

According to details, three police constables (Muhafaz Force) of Rawalpindi Police abducted the girl at around 2:00 am on May 16, and allegedly gang raped her for the next two hours in the rear seat of the official police vehicle before dropping her off near her hostel located in Commercial Centre, Satellite Town at around 4:00 am. The three Rawalpindi Police constables were accompanied by a young civilian. All four have been arrested and their medical tests have been conducted already.

In the Shahzeb murder case, the family had to forgive the murderers because of the latter’s social influence and political power.

“We were stopped by a white Toyota Corolla car, bearing registration no: ADB-332, in which four persons were riding. They pulled both of us out of our vehicle and forced me to sit in their car on gunpoint while they threatened and told my friend Umair Azam Kiyani to go away. They drove off some distance and then parked the vehicle on the roadside and put dark blinds on the windows of the vehicle and raped me one by one in the back seat of the car. Later, they dropped me off near my hostel. Before freeing me, they snatched Rs30,000 as well as a gold ring valued at Rs12,000,” the girl had said in the FIR.

IG Punjab and Chief Minister, Usman Buzdar, took notice of the tragic incident and directed the local police to furnish reports. Social media also demanded justice for the girl. However, there were also some reports after the girl had registered an FIR that her family was being pressurized by the policemen to drop the charges against them.

Read more: 15-year old Urooj raped in Karachi’s Gulistan-e-Johar: Mother demands justice

Well-placed sources claim that a settlement has taken place between the girl’s family and the involved policemen after which the case has decidedly weakened. It is claimed that this case is a usual development in Pakistan where the powerful families have the ability to buy justice when they are not served with it by the court.

In the Shahzeb murder case, the family had to forgive the murderers because of the latter’s social influence and political power. In the present case, the people of Pakistan shall lose every hope if the state is unable to protect the girl and her family and serve them with justice.

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