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Thursday Jul 27 2017

Shehbaz Sharif pledges swift justice for Multan panchayat rape victims


MULTAN: Chief Minister Punjab Shehbaz Sharif visited the victims of the Multan panchayat rape case on Thursday, and assured them and their families of swift and exemplary justice.

Addressing media after his visit to the Women Crisis Centre in Multan, the minister vowed exemplary punishment for perpetrators of the heinous incident. “Those responsible [for the crime] will not be spared in any circumstance,” he said.

Shehbaz also ordered immediate suspension of police officers involved in registering the case, holding them responsible for their negligence in ensuring swift action in the case.

The minister said that the FIR for the first incident of rape was filed eight days later. “The incident shows the worst negligence on part of the police,” he lamented.

Shehbaz also announced that a three-member committee has been formed which will reach Multan today to probe the case. The concerned authorities have been given 72 hours to submit a report on the case to the committee, he said.

Earlier this month, members of a panchayat (council of elders) ordered the rape of a 16-year-old girl as punishment for a rape allegedly committed by her brother, in a horrific incident of revenge rape which surfaced in the local media on Wednesday.

According to local police, a man had complained to the panchayat that his 12-year-old sister had been raped by their cousin. The panchayat then ordered the complainant to rape the 16-year-old sister of the accused in revenge.

Police, upon hearing of the incident, arrested 10 members of the panchayat, including its head. In the following days, police were able to nab all main accused, said to be around 20.