The police on Tuesday night arrested a man who had allegedly ‘bought’ a girl from her brothers a year ago.
Model Town SP Tariq Aziz Sindhu told The Express Tribune that Mariam*, youngest of seven siblings, lost her parents in a motorbike accident three years ago.
She then started living with two of her brothers, Shamoon and Asif, in Bhai Pheru.
The SP said she was ‘sold off’ to a distant relative, Basheer Masih, for Rs40,000 a year ago.
He said Mariam ran away from Masih’s house in Youhanabad on Friday and went to her uncle Bhola Masih for help. He said her uncle brought her to the police.
Sindhu said the police found and arrested the man on Tuesday.
He said he claimed he had married the girl at Model Town courts a year ago. He said the man could not furnish proof of the marriage.
“He is obviously lying as no court would allow him to marry a 12-year-old,” Sindhu said.
Sindhu said that the girl had accused the man and his 18-year-old nephew of sexually assaulting her.
Sindhu said the nephew had also been detained.
Bhola Masih, the girl’s uncle, told The Express Tribune that Basheer was an alcoholic and had been involved in drug peddling cases some years ago.
Kot Lakhpat SHO Atif Meraj told The Express Tribune that the girl was presented before a judicial magistrate on Wednesday and permission was sought to get her examined by doctors.
He said that the court had allowed the medical examination and the girl would be examined by doctors of the Lahore General Hospital on Thursday (today).
A case under Section 376 of the Pakistan Penal Code (PPC) was initiated against Basheer and his nephew. SHO Meraj said action under Section 109 of the PPC had been initiated against the girl’s brothers, Shamoon and Asif.
*NAME HAS BEEN CHANGED TO PROTECT IDENTITY
Published in The Express Tribune, May 15th, 2014.