Missing Gujranwala minor found dead in home, police suspect rape

The body of a ‘missing’ 10-year-old girl was found stuffed in a box in her home in Gaya Wali village, Gujranwala, on Wednesday, March 3.

Meerab was reported missing by her family two days back, when she had gone to visit her grandfather who lived nearby but did not return. On Wednesday, they noticed a strange smell in their house and began looking for the source, finally discovering the decomposing body of the missing girl in a box.

Aroop police have detained a relative for questioning, and suspect that the minor may have also been raped before she was murdered. The deceased has been shifted to a district headquarters (DHQ) hospital for an autopsy, and reports are awaited.

Motorway gang-rape accused indicted by ATC

An anti-terrorism court (ATC) on Wednesday indicted Abid Malhi and Shafqat Bagga, accused in the Lahore-Sialkot motorway gang-rape incident, and recorded statements of prosecution witnesses. Both accused pleaded ‘not guilty’.

The prosecution has enlisted 53 witnesses for the investigation in the case, including the person who reported the incident and the motorway rape-survivor. The court recorded the statements of ten witnesses, and adjourned the hearing till today.

75 COVID-19 deaths record on March 2

According to the National Command and Operations Center, 75 COVID-19 fatalities were reported on March 2, the second highest daily death tally since the beginning of the year. January 1 was the most fatal day with 82 deaths.

Pakistan’s daily death rate remained at 2.0% for the first wave in 2020, but slightly rose to 2.2% with the second wave. Despite a noticeable drop in new infections after the second wave peak passed in December 2020, fatalities are still high, averaging 90.5 deaths since the beginning of the new year till date.

Experts now fear a third wave as restrictions have eased and regular on-campus classes resume. Most worrying is that the general public is now lax in observing SOP and other health protocols ever since the government’s COVID-19 vaccination drive kicked off.