Monday, January 15, 2018

Punjab IG, AG issued notices as SC takes up Zainab rape and murder case tomorrow

A three-member bench of the apex court will begin hearing of the suo motu case from Tuesday

Protesters hold signs and chant slogans to condemn the rape and killing of 7-year-old girl Zainab Ansari in Kasur, during a protest in Lahore, Pakistan January 14, 2018 - Reuters 

ISLAMABAD: The Supreme Court of Pakistan has issued notices to the Punjab Inspector General Police (IGP) and the advocate general in the rape and murder case of seven-year-old Zainab.

A three-member bench of the apex court will begin hearing the suo motu case from Tuesday.

Zainab was kidnapped on January 4 from near her aunt’s house in Kasur. Her body was discovered five days later from a garbage pile. The post-mortem report revealed that Zainab had been raped and murdered. 

Chief Justice of Pakistan Justice Saqib Nisar had taken a suo motu notice of the case on January 10, ordering the Punjab IGP to submit a report to the court within 21 hours.

The Punjab Police submitted a report the next day which provided details of Zainab's kidnapping and the ongoing investigation to the Supreme Court. 

Punjab govt, police not serious

On Monday (today), Lahore High Court Chief Justice Mansoor Ali Shah remarked that the Punjab government and police appeared non-serious in the case.

Chief Justice Shah made the remarks after the non-appearance of the Punjab police chief while hearing the suo motu notice of Zainab’s case.

“Had the government taken action against similar suspects earlier, the present incident would not have occurred,” the LHC chief justice observed.

New CCTV video

A new CCTV video released on Monday shows Zainab with a suspicious person on the day she was kidnapped.

Over a week after the discovery of Zainab’s body, no arrests have been made.

Muhammad Ameen, the aggrieved father of the seven-year-old girl, lamented before the media on Sunday that not a single suspect in the case had been arrested.

“The police keep assuring us that the suspect will be arrested soon,” he said.