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Zainab case: Police finally arrest culprit!

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News Analysis |

Punjab Police arrested a suspect in the Zainab murder case on Tuesday. The suspect, Imran, is a neighbor of Zainab. Police claims that the DNA results have matched and they also claim that the suspect resembles the person in Zainab’s CCTV footage. This is not the first time that a suspect has been arrested in the Zainab murder and rape case. On the same day, the Joint Investigation Team (JIT) released a suspect because the DNA evidence didn’t match.

The suspect, Imran, who’s DNA test has matched was arrested before as well but pleaded his innocence to the police. News channels claim that the man was freed earlier because of somebody powerful who forced the police to have him released.

Timely apprehension of criminals. Introducing a public hanging clause in the PPC might get Pakistan in trouble with national and international human rights groups that are strongly opposed to capital punishment.

Punjab police arrested 23-year-old Umar Farooq some days ago from Lahore. The suspect had already confessed to his crimes during the investigation but when his DNA samples were sent to Punjab Forensic Science Agency (PFSA), but the results came out negative. The police had arrested the suspect in a massive raid in the Cantonment area of Lahore a week ago. Interestingly, this suspect also resembled the man shown in Zainab’s CCTV footage.

Read more: #JusticeForZainab

It is unsure whether the police have arrested the right culprit this time because numerous suspects have been arrested in the past two weeks, and the police have claimed to catch the right person every time. The fact that the last suspect, Umar Farooq, confessed to the crime is very disturbing. It shows that rather than looking for the actual culprit, the police is arresting innocents and coercing them to confess to the crimes.

It puts a big question mark on the credibility of Punjab police and their ability to apprehend actual culprits. The Senate’s Standing Committee on Interior proposed an amendment to increase the punishment of Section 364A of the Pakistan Penal Code (PPC) to ‘hanging to death publicly’.

The punishments for the crime of child abuse, rape and murder are already present in the Pakistan Penal Code (PPC) but a criminal cannot be punishment unless they are apprehended, and changing the criminal code

The chairman of the committee Senator Rehman Malik suspended the agenda of the parliamentary body’s meeting and announced that the committee will discuss the kidnapping, rape and murder of two girls, Zainab and Asma, from Kasur and Mardan. It was expedient to amend the Pakistan Penal Code (PPC) to make offender dreadful for other offenders,” Malik stressed.

Read more: Zainab’s father lambasts AJK PM for his immature statements

The committee asked the National Counter Terrorism Authority (NACTA) to add a feature to their upcoming apps for reporting crimes through pictures and footages. The Senate committee asked all the inspector generals (IGs) to set up special cells under their own command at all police headquarters for rapid response to the complaints of child abuse.

The RPO’s of Kasur and Mardan were directed to provide full proof security to the families of Zainab and Asma. The purpose of every punishment is to create deterrence among people who intend to commit that crime.

The Senate’s Standing Committee on Interior proposed an amendment to increase the punishment of Section 364A of the Pakistan Penal Code (PPC) to ‘hanging to death publicly’.

The punishments for the crime of child abuse, rape and murder are already present in the Pakistan Penal Code (PPC) but a criminal cannot be punished unless they are apprehended, and changing the criminal code to add an even more stringent punishment is unlikely to help in the capture of murderers, rapists and paedophiles.

Read more: What became of Zainab?

The creation of a special wing in all police headquarters and the addition of reporting crimes through footage would help in prevention, and timely apprehension of criminals. Introducing a public hanging clause in the PPC might get Pakistan in trouble with national and international human rights groups that are strongly opposed to capital punishment.


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