An 18-year-old girl was gang raped a week ago, after she was kidnapped from her house and kept in the rapists’ custody for 11 days.
The victim Safia’s family has threatened to commit suicide if their daughter’s rapists are not caught within two days. “We have submitted an application with the police and told them where the rapists are but no action has been taken. Instead, they asked us for money to register the case,” said Noor Ali, Safia’s father.
Ali, a 55-year-old labourer, said that he and his six children would set themselves on fire outside the Toba Tek Singh District Police Officer (DPO) office if police action was not taken. Talking to The Express Tribune, Ali said that his daughter Safia was kidnapped from her house by nine accused. “They took her at gun point and kept her for more than eleven days. She said that she was raped by a new person every day,” he told reporters.
Safia escaped the rapists three days ago and reached her house. “I was tortured, starved and raped and when we got a medical report and approached the police they refused to file the case,” she said. Safia alleged that Muhammad Afzal, Imran, Eshan, Nazar Abbas and Asrar had kidnapped and raped her and that the police were refusing to file the case because the men had influence.
Police Station Kamalia Sadar Station House Officer (SHO) Elyas Ahmed allegedly threatened Safia. “I have gone through hell. I was raped repeatedly and had to run through the streets without clothes just to escape. By the time I finally reached home and then to the police they refused to help. The SHO told me to keep the matter quiet and that if I didn’t he would not be responsible for what would happen to me,” she said. “When area police refused to register case against the accused, I have to move the Additional Session Judge Kamalia for registration of the case”, Noor Ali said. “Another inspector charged us Rs15,000/- for the registration of the FIR against the accused. The police make it impossible to seek justice,” he added.
Noor Ali said that some of the accused are already involved in a number of rape case but no action has been taken against them. “We have been receiving death threats and I have been disgraced in the entire village. If police doesn’t take action we will all kill ourselves,” he added.
SHO Sadar Kamalia Elyas Ahmad refuted the allegations and said that the case vide FIR No.270/11 under Section 356-B of PPC has been registered. “The case was cancelled because the accusations were found to be baseless. The girl is staging a show for sympathy. She is faking the gang rape,” he added.
“We have a medical report to prove the rape. How can they accuse me of forging gang rape,” Safia told the press.
“Dozens of people saw Safia run naked through the village to get home. She has locked herself at home for weeks out of shame,” said a neighbour Maroofa Shafi.
*The names of the victim and her family have been changed to protect her identity
Published in The Express Tribune, September 11th, 2011.