KARACHI: The trial of two men detained over the grisly abduction, rape and murder of a young girl last December has still not started at the Anti-Terrorism Court II after almost 10 months.
Despite repeated reminders by the court, the two suspects have refused to hire a lawyer to represent them, which is why the case proceedings have not started.
If they do not, the court will appoint a state lawyer to defend the men.
Another suspect is absconding.
The charge-sheet filed against the three men by the Jauharabad police describes them as “predators” and provides a horrifying account of how the girl was killed.
The six-year-old victim was reported missing by her family on December 12, 2011, after she went to a park opposite her house but never returned.
A couple of days after she went missing, a family turned up at the girl’s house with a hint to her disappearance: they had seen her riding a camel being led away by a man.
On December 15, the family of the girl was called to the Edhi morgue to identify a body that had been found in the bushes near Karachi University. The girl in the morgue had been allegedly raped, strangled to death and her eyes gouged out. A DNA test was conducted as well as an autopsy.
The post- mortem sparked a protest by the victim’s family, who said that they had not given consent.
The two men in custody – Basheer Ahmed and Abdul Majeed – were arrested by the police on December 21, 2011. The suspects are facing charges of murder on common intent, kidnapping a minor and rape. They have also been charged under the anti-terrorism act.
Published in The Express Tribune, October 18th, 2012.