ISLAMABAD: The Supreme Court on Tuesday ordered police to submit evidence in a case pertaining to the alleged torture of a housemaid, Tayyaba, till Feb 15, rejecting an application of an out-of-court settlement reached between the accused and the victim’s parents
The case of 10-year-old Tayyaba, a domestic worker at the home of former additional district and sessions judge Raja Khurram Ali and his wife Maheen, first came to light after photos of the child depicting alleged torture by her employers began circulating on social media.
Tayyaba was rescued from their residence with visible wounds on Dec 28, 2016, and an FIR (First Information Report) was filed against her employers a day later.
Ali reached a compromise with Tayyaba’s parents on Jan 2, 2017, and a day later the child was handed over to her parents. On Jan 4, however, the apex court took suo motu notice of the matter and directed police to investigate all aspects of the case.
The Supreme Court in a hearing on Jan 11 then observed that the role of a lawyer, Raja Zahoor Hassan, was of key interest with regards to an ‘illegitimate compromise’ reached between the suspects and the child’s family.
Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Justice Saqib Nisar had insisted there was no doubt that a criminal act had been committed in the case and directed police to investigate the preparation of the compromise deed as well as matters related to internal trafficking of child labourers.
After the police in their report had focused only on the child’s abuse and the possible involvement of the suspects, the SC expressed displeasure with the investigation of the case and referred it back to the IHC for further deliberation.
During Tuesday’s hearing, a three-member bench, headed by the CJP, rejected an application of accused judge Raja Khurram Ali Khan pertaining to an out-of-court settlement reached between him and the victim’s parents, ordering authorities to gather evidence by Feb 15 in the case
The chief justice observed that the application seeking to allow the parties involved in the case to reach an agreement lacked merit.
On Monday, the CJP had expressed anger at the delay in the proceedings of the case and had issued a notice to the Punjab advocate general.