Mardan rape and murder: Jirga gives govt ultimatum to nab culprits



MARDAN: The district government of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa’s (KP) city Mardan has summoned an All Party Conference (APC) on Friday over the brutal rape and murder of a four-year-old girl.

According to details, the jirga of elders in the area has taken action by giving the government an ultimatum of 72 hours to arrest the culprits and launch an investigation against them.

Earlier, police personnel arrested as many as 20 suspicious people in a case pertaining to strangling a four-year-old child to death after raping her in Mardan.

The girl’s body was found three days ago after which her medical test was conducted that confirmed rape. However, her blood sample was also sent to a forensic laboratory in Lahore for further verification.

Mardan DPO said that a Joint Investigation Team (JIT) has been formed to probe the case under his supervision. He said that a few people have been taken into custody while geo-fencing of the area is also underway.

Meanwhile, Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari strongly condemned the mishap and declared it a horrible crime. He demanded the authorities provide justice to the bereaved family.

Mardan District Nazim Himayatullah Mayar stated that the child was murdered after being raped after the girl was found dead in Mardan’s Gujar Garhi area Monday morning. He said that he has seen the postmortem report and it clearly states that the minor was raped. Moreover, he demanded that the authorities concerned should add clauses of rape and terrorism in the case and arrest the suspects within 24 hours. Mayar alleged that the police are trying their best to hide the postmortem report.

However, DPO Mardan Mian Saeed negated the claims and said that the girl was strangled to death. He stated that the post-mortem report does not point towards rape.

However, KP Inspector General (IG) Salahuddin Mehsud confirmed that the minor girl found dead in Mardan’s Gujar Garhi area was strangled to death, but added that the post-mortem report pointed towards sexual assault as well. “It seems like the culprit’s intention was to sexually assault [the minor],” he had told reporters. The minor’s post-mortem also showed signs of torture, the IG had further informed.

According to the police, the girl had gone missing after she left her house a day earlier. The police have also formed an investigation team to probe the incident.

PM’s adviser Ameer Muqam condemned the incident and said: “The cases against minors have become quite problematic for the entire country.”

Lashing out at the PML-N’s political opponent Imran Khan, he remarked that this incident shows the ‘brilliant’ performance of Imran’s police.

“Imran’s concept of justice changes in different provinces. His consciousness is awakened only in Punjab while he turns a blind eye towards injustice in KP,” said Muqam.

Before this, two innocent girls were killed after being raped in the area of KP Chief Minister (CM) Pervaiz Khattak’s constituency.

Meanwhile, CM Pervaiz Khattak visited the bereaved family of four-year-old Asma on Thursday. The CM assured the family that all possible help would be extended to them by the provincial government.

Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) dissident member of National Assembly (MNA) Ayesha Gulalai also strongly condemned the molestation and killing of four-year-old Asma and said that the killing of the minor had exposed the real face of KP police whom Imran Khan claimed were the best police in Pakistan.

During her visit to the bereaved family’s house, she called for a trial of all the cases related to child molestation, including those of Zainab, Asma and Sharifan Bibi in military courts, adding that KP police were trying to influence the medical report by concealing facts in Asma’s case.

She said the ‘exemplary’ police of KP had failed to arrest the culprits so far, while adding that despite the passage of six days, the police had failed to find any lead to identify and arrest the culprits.

She called for justice for the families of the victims and said if the Child Protection Bureau could not perform its duty, then its officials should resign forthwith.