Struggling for life, a 17-year-old girl landed in hospital after consuming a large quantity of potassium permanganate in an attempt to kill herself.
The eighth grader is the only sister of three brothers and belongs to Doaba village in Piplan, Mianwali. She was alleged raped by two men of an influential clan some two months back.
Her family said she was under “great stress” and believe the delay in justice led her to take the extreme step. Also, she probably felt guilty for putting her family in trouble, a family member said.
Piplan police has arrested the two suspects nominated in the case. One of them is 35 years old while the other is 30. A police official said they were keeping the two men in the police station and waiting for the DNA report. Once they have the report, they will decide whether to file for a remand.
The girl’s family alleged that the “influential” family of the “rapists” was threatening the girl’s father and brothers to settle for reconciliation.
On Monday, the girl was rushed District Headquarters Hosital, Piplan where doctors managed to save her life. She was shifted to Pakistan Institute of Medical Sciences for further treatment, where she is said to be recovering.
Haji Muhammad Tariq, a witness in the case, told The Express Tribune that she was kidnapped by Farid*, his cousin Hameed* and their servant Musaab*, from a road, while she was going to attend a marriage ceremony.
“She was taken to Farid’s place where he and his servant Musaab raped her while Hameed stood guard outside,” Tariq said, adding, “She was coming to attend the marriage ceremony of one of my cousins.”
Later, on finding out that she had been kidnapped, the girl’s father and Tariq, along with other family members, went to Farid’s place, who refused to come out. Late in the evening, the suspects “had dropped the girl off at a place close to her home”. Her poor family decided to take legal action against Farid.
‘The Station House Officer of the Piplan Police Station refused to register an FIR on our application. He [told us to] draft a new application as directed by the police and only then registered the case against two of the suspects Farid and Musaab,”
Later, the girl was produced before a magistrate for statement who ordered a medical check-up. Both the initial medical check-up and the chemical tests confirmed that the girl was raped. However, the Piplan police insisted on carrying out a DNA test.
Piplan police version
A Piplan police official, investigating the case, said the girl was friends with Musaab and went to Farid’s place of her own will.
“Rafiq had taken her to Rasheed’s place on his motorbike. And she was picked up from the marriage ceremony not the road,” said the investigation officer, adding they suspect the girl made up a cover story to explain her absence at the wedding party, after her family members noticed she was missing.
She was picked up at 9pm and returned home late, the police official said. She feared her family might question her stay at Farid’s place once they had come to know of it, said the police officer, insisting that DNA test will help them in determining what happened.
However, the girl’s family maintained there was no need to conduct the DNA test as the rape had been proven by the medical tests.
Police said the suspects would be sent to jail only after the police receives the DNA test report, which is not likely for a month or so.
The suspects might be sentenced to death for gang rape, if proven, according to Protection of Women (Criminal Laws Amendment) Act, 2006.
Published in The Express Tribune, May 28th, 2011.
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