Women assaulted, stripped by alleged land grabbers

Victims accuse police of helping suspects


Iftikhar Chaudhry September 24, 2021
According to reports, the woman lost her eye sight in 2011 when she was attacked with acid. PHOTO: REUTERS

ISLAMABAD:

A widow and her sister were allegedly assaulted and stripped by members of the land mafia for refusing to sell their ancestral land at a throwaway price.

According to the women, residents of the Bhara Kahu area of Islamabad, the alleged land grabbers also opened fire at them, tore their clothes and made their objectionable video.

The victims, Shabana and Sonia Zaman, told The Express Tribune that their deceased father, Raja Qayyum, was a retired civil servant of the Punjab bureaucracy. After his demise, they inherited seven kanals along Express Highway in the jurisdiction of Bhara Kahu Police Station.

They said that a few days after their father’s death, a man, named Naubahar, illegally occupied the land adjacent to their property and started building a room. The sisters suspecting foul play started visiting their property every Sunday and, in the meantime, the suspect asked the sisters to sell their land and started threatening them.

The suspect told the sisters to sell the seven kanals to him for Rs 2 million per kanal, or be ready to face grave consequences if they refused his offer.

When the sisters visited their property on September 17, the suspect and his accomplices showed up and opened fire at them.

Read Woman beaten over land issue

They said that their workers made videos of this incident. Shabana said the suspects also assaulted Sonia and their two workers.

They tore Sonia’s clothes and stripped her naked, Shabana claimed. When she lay on the ground to hide her body, the suspects made her stand at gunpoint and filmed her. They also threatened to make the objectionable video viral on the internet.

The attackers also snatched gold jewellery from Sonia and the motorcycle of their domestic workers, they alleged.

The victims contacted Bhara Kahu police for help but they helped them, the victims alleged. Again, they showed up at the police station to lodge the FIR, but the police mistreated them. The police made them sit in the station from 5 pm till midnight but did not register a case nor arrest any of the suspects despite being provided information about them, the victims claimed.

The victims said police forced them to exclude from their complaint the incidents of firing, making of nude videos, snatching of gold jewellery and motorcycle and tearing off the woman’s clothes and registered an FIR on the third day of the incident. They alleged the police helped the land mafia by incorporating weak sections in the FIR.

Bhara Kahu SP Asad Ali said that the main suspect was the complainants’ cousin and did not turn up to the police station after he was summoned. He said the police had conducted a raid to apprehend the suspect, however; he escaped. The police officer claimed that all necessary provisions have been incorporated in the FIR registered against the suspects.

Published in The Express Tribune, September 24th, 2021.

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