Rights Watch | September 24th 2020

--Villagers in Mansehra chase out the family of the man accused of raping 4 y/o girl on Sept 21 --9 y/o girl found hanging from a noose in her one-room home in Islamabad during parents' absence --Rape among top reported crimes in Punjab in September --Agencies deny holding missing person Imdad Ali to SHC


Family of rape suspect hounded

Villagers in Pakhwal, Mansehra chased out of their village the family of a man alleged to have raped a four-year-old girl on Monday, September 21.

According to reports, the accused (himself a father) had lured the child into some fields where he then proceeded to sexually assault her. Protests for the immediate arrest and trial of the accused erupted on Tuesday, however, police had managed to disperse the crowd after offering assurances that the culprit would be remanded soon.

According to the suspect’s brother, the family had already turned him in and refused any support if he is found guilty, however, police have yet to confirm that any arrests were made.

Minor girl found hanged in Islamabad

A nine-year-old girl was found hanging from a noose in her one-room home near Bari Imam, Islamabad on Wednesday, September 23. According to the police, both parents were absent when the incident occurred – her mother, a domestic worker, was out for work while her father was visiting his mother, leaving his three children alone in their home. At some point, the girl’s sister had also left home briefly. The minor’s body was discovered hanging from the ceiling by her father. The deceased has been shifted to a nearby hospital for a post-mortem examination.

Punjab haunted by rapes in September

Rapes were the top reported crime in Punjab for the month of September, in spite of repeated assurances of due diligence and effective performance of the Punjab Police. Several sexual assault cases, including gang-rapes, against women and children, were reported in Lahore, Muzaffargarh, Depalpur, Okara, and Sargodha, to name a few.

The most shocking of these cases was the motorway gang-rape and robbery on September 10, which raised questions as to the security of citizens in a place believed to have previously been one of the safest areas in the city. Moreover, the failure of the Punjab Police to apprehend the prime suspect, Abid, despite the passage of two weeks since the motorway incident.

Agencies deny detaining missing persons

The Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) and Military Intelligence (MI) denied detaining one Imdad Ali Umrani, who has been missing since 2015, to the Hyderabad circuit bench of the Sindh High Court (SHC) during a hearing on the case on Wednesday, September 23.

A petition regarding his disappearance was filed in the SHC by his mother, Malookzadi, who stated that she was informed by a shop owner that her son was picked up by plainclothes agents on October 26, 2015. However, when she submitted a missing report at the Qasimabad police station, the police did not entertain her complaint. A JIT formed under orders of the SHC in 2018 found that Imdad Ali may have likely disappeared on his own, citing a witness account that the missing man was prone to disappearing for odd lengths of time as he had connections with a jihadi group.