Two witnesses correctly identified on Saturday three suspects accused of kidnapping, raping and murdering a seven-year-old girl last month.
The witnesses, whose identities have been concealed, deposed before a Malir district judicial magistrate that they had seen the suspects taking away the girl before she was reported missing on July 30.
The witnesses are both dwellers of the same area of Janjal Goth in Malir where the girl and the suspects lived.
The girl was kidnapped while playing in the street near her home, after which her father received a ransom demand for her release. However, before her father could negotiate or take any action, her body was found in a deserted plot nearby.
The case was registered with the Sachal police under Sections 302, murder, 363, kidnapping, 365-A, kidnapping for ransom, 376-ii, rape, and 34, common intention, of the Pakistan Penal Code, read with Section 7 of the Anti-Terrorism Act the next day.
The police apprehended a suspect, Abid, who, during the initial course of the interrogation, confessed to the crime and revealed the names of his two accomplices, Imran Ali and Sher Muhammad, who have also been arrested. One of the witnesses told the judge that he saw Abid walking with the girl towards a motorbike on which the other suspects were waiting. Since the witness knew the men and that the child was their neighbour, he did not suspect anything untoward. The second witness's statement was almost identical.
The magistrate, after recording the witnesses' statements, sealed his report to send it to the relevant anti-terrorism court-I trying the suspects.
The suspects are currently on physical remand in police custody till August 16 and the investigation officer has been directed to produce a progress report at next hearing.
Published in The Express Tribune, August 9th, 2015.
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