A man filed an application with the Supreme Court (SC) Human Rights Cell claiming that the police had failed to arrest a cleric who allegedly abused his eight-year old son.
According to the documents, Behram*, a resident of Nankana Sahib district, filed an application against the police for not arresting Shahid*, a cleric who allegedly abused his son Nazeer*, a student at a seminary run by the accused.
“On July 7, 2013 my son went to the madrassah and was sexually abused by Shahid. He also threatened the child with dire consequence if he tried to expose the issue,” he alleged.
The complainant maintained that after the incident, his son was reluctant to go to the madrassah, and only told his parents about the incident when his mother insisted on him going. “He couldn’t control his tears while narrating the incident to his mother,” he said.
He further added that the police initially refused to register a First Information Report (FIR) against the cleric, but after his efforts, on August 20, 2013, the police registered a case after a medical report proved that the child had been sexually abused.
“Despite the FIR, the police are still reluctant to arrest him. They are helping Shahid in trying to hush-up the case,” he said, adding that the police were allegedly bribed by Shahid, who also happens to be quite wealthy.
The complainant stated that he had submitted numerous applications with the Sheikhpura regional police officer, Inspector General of the Punjab Police and the Nakana Sahib district police officer, but lack of action on their behalf forced him to approach the SC Human Rights Cell.
Investigation Officer Sikandar Hayat claimed the police are investigating and an arrest will take some time. “An FIR has been registered, which in itself is a big deal,” he said.
*Names changed to protect identity
Published in The Express Tribune, September 4th, 2013.