The grisly tale of the murders and mutiliation of two women’s bodies in Karachi took a turn on Tuesday when the police arrested a suspect. But the man caught by the police has few answers for his interrogators and the press for his alleged motives.
The women’s bodies were found in plastic bags spread across Saddar and Jamshed Town on March 10 and April 10, exactly a month apart.
The suspect, Rafiq, is a 45-year-old rickshaw driver. The police caught him on Monday night in a raid from Patel Para near Guru Mandir. For now, his self-confessed motive appears to be misogyny – targeted at sex workers.
“Do you hate women?” asked one reporter. “Why did you not kill men?” said another.
Rafiq had several answers: “The devil had taken over me,” he said. “I had no idea what I was doing.”
“There might be others involved too. We don’t want to disclose who at the moment,” said DSP Jamshed Quarters Qaiser A Shah. He says they will keep questioning Rafiq. Shah also claims that another murder was being planned for May.
The suspect, who is originally from Sukkur’s Allahbad Colony, said he had a content childhood and belongs to a well-off family. He studied till the ninth grade and then began driving rickshaws. At 19, he married a girl of his choice, and has eight children, with ninth one on the way. “I have never beaten my children or my wife,” he said, and claimed that he is against honour killings.
He has also served three years in Sukkur jail for being implicated in the murder of a seven-year-old girl, but was later acquitted. He moved to Karachi in September, last year but his family moved back to Sukkur in February since his wife wanted to be home to deliver their ninth child. Since then, he has been living in a two-room apartment in Patel Para.
He claims that he was not involved in the first murder he was implicated in and his friend ‘Papu’ had strangled a woman over an argument. But he does admit to helping dismembering the first victim, Nasreen. He has allegedly also confessed to the second murder, who according to him was also a sex worker and demanded more money than they had agreed on.
He says he felt nothing about the act of dismemberment because the “devil was over me”.
While he had read about the murders, he was not aware that the police would catch him. He was eventually traced through the phone of the first victim which Papu and Rafiq were allegedly using. The other man named by Rafiq is reportedly on the run.
Published in The Express Tribune, April 25th, 2012.
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