Four accused of raping health workers killed in shoot-out

Suspects were being taken for interrogation when their accomplices attacked police van


Our Correspondent January 15, 2017
PHOTO: EXPRESS

GUJRAT: At least four suspects, who raped two lady health workers posted at a Basic Health Unit in Bheelwal, were killed in an encounter between the police and their accomplices on Sunday.

An official said the police nabbed four suspects involved in sexual assault on two lady health workers and was taking them in a police van for interrogation and recovery of items when their accomplices attacked the police in Ghulam Muhammad Kot area.

The outlaws opened indiscriminate firing on the cops and as a result, the police also retaliated. During the cross-firing, the four arrested outlaws were killed.  However, their accomplices fled the scene under the cover of fire.

The deceased were identified as Liaquat, Hasnain and Iftikhar while the identity of the fourth suspect could not be ascertained as yet. The police shifted the bodies to the hospital for legal formalities. A case had been registered at the police station.

Earlier on December 29, 2016, at least four armed men barged into the room of the public health facility within the Tanda police jurisdiction at night and sexually assaulted the two women who were asleep. Another lady health worker was also present in the facility when the outlaws committed the heinous crime. However, the severity of the assault on her was not yet clear.  The culprits also took away Rs8,000 and other valuables while fleeing. The Gujrat DPO also confirmed the gang-rape.

The rape victims registered a complaint of the incident to Gujrat DPO Sohail Zafar Chatha on January 13 (Friday). The DPO directed the police to register an FIR and arrest the culprits.

Similarly in June 2016, a man accused of raping 11 minors was killed in an encounter near Gailaywal, Lodhran district. Police said they were taking accused Munir for interrogation when three of his accomplices on motorcycles stopped the police vehicle and opened fire on it. Police said they were trying to help Munir flee. Police said the accomplices had managed to flee but Munir was shot and killed in the encounter.

Published in The Express Tribune, January 16th, 2017.

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