Cleric Mufti Aziz-ur-Rehman has matched positively with the individual seen in a video showing sexual molestation of a seminary student, said Lahore Deputy Inspector General of Police (DIG) Investigations Shariq Jamal on Monday.
The cleric had confessed to the crime on June 21 in which he said that “The video of molestation is of me; I made a mistake and I'm embarrassed about it.”
The cleric's face was matched using digital forensic techniques. Jamal told The Express Tribune that no evidence of editing was found in the video clip according to the forensic analysis.
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"Physical features of suspect Mufti Aziz and the victim also matched in forensic analysis" Jamal added. "The DNA report, however, tested negative as the incident was very old," added the police official.
On June 16, the police registered a First Information Report (FIR) against the 70-year-old on the survivor’s complaint.
Mufti Aziz, also the Lahore vice ameer of Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam (JUI) at the time, had threatened to kill the survivor.
The survivor's statement
The survivor maintained in the FIR that, “I was admitted into the madrassa in 2013 and had been attending it since. He blamed me for making another student take my exam due to which I was banned from giving exams with the Wafaqul Madrassa for three years.”
Shah further stated in his FIR that, “Mufti Aziz promised passing me in exams in exchange for keeping immoral relations with me.”
The complainant stated that the cleric and his sons – Altaf, Atique, Lateef - and three other individuals have been threatening to murder him for releasing the video.
A video message was also leaked with the footage by the teary-eyed survivor, in which he claims that: “My attacker’s sons have threatened to kill me for exposing him [Mufti Aziz]”.
In distress, the victim shared that he is in hiding, adding that, “It is better I die” out of fear of retribution in the recording.
The video spread shock-waves on Pakistani Twitter as netizens not only called for immediate action to be taken against Aziz but also clear out pedophiles in religious seminaries across the country.
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