Nation in shock as 'armed men' rape girl in Islamabad park

Rapists threatened victim to remain quiet or they would call "friends" to join them, according to FIR

By
Ahmed Subhan
|
Ayaz Akbar Yousafzai
People carry signs against a gang rape that occurred along a highway and to condemn violence against women and girls, during a protest in Karachi September 12, 2020. — Reuters
People carry signs against a gang rape that occurred along a highway and to condemn violence against women and girls, during a protest in Karachi September 12, 2020. — Reuters
  • Forensic checkup of victim confirms bruises consistent with sexual assault.
  • Suspects being traced through CCTV footage and Safe City cameras, says police.
  • Nation in outrage, demands swift justice for victim.


ISLAMABAD: Two armed men have allegedly raped a girl in Islamabad's F-9 area at gunpoint, police said Saturday, an incident that has sent the nation into shock.

The incident took place Thursday night when two armed men approached the victim at a park in F-9, who was there with her male colleague, according to the first information report (FIR).

The gun-toting aggressors took the two to a nearby thicket at gunpoint and separated them, according to the FIR. The attackers beat the young woman up when she pleaded with them to let her go and even offered them money in exchange for her safety, the FIR reads.

The victim, when she tried to raise her voice, was beaten and threatened by the attackers they would call their "friends" to join them. Her attempts to run away were also foiled by the attackers, the FIR stated.

Satellite view of the park in Islamabads F-9. — Google Maps
Satellite view of the park in Islamabad's F-9. — Google Maps

As they were leaving into a nearby thicket, the alleged culprits returned "all our things and gave us Rs1,000 to stay quiet" while also telling the victim that she should not be in the park at this time of the night, according to the FIR.

Margalla police confirmed that a case had been registered against the suspects and the police had started investigating the incident.

The suspects are being traced through CCTV footage and Safe City cameras, according to police. The officials of F-9 park were also being interrogated to find clues about the suspects, the police personnel added.

The victim underwent a medical examination at the Pakistan Institute of Medical Sciences (PIMS) yesterday, confirmed the hospital sources. The sources said that marks of torture were found on the girl’s body.

Meanwhile, the samples taken from the victim have been sent to the forensic laboratory for deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) tests.

The forensic checkup of the woman confirmed that marks consistent with sexual assault were found on the body of the 24-year-old victim.

“There are injury marks on the leg, and face of the victim,” said sources in PIMs.

Islamabad police probing the incident

Reacting to the F9 Park incident, the Islamabad police said its Gender Protection Unit is probing the harassment under CPO Operations Sohail Zafar Chattha. 

Currently, the special unit is interrogating the park administration and those present at the time of the incident. 

Outrage

As the news of the attack spread, people have taken to Twitter to express their shock and disgust at the attack in the country’s capital.

One user wrote: "News about a heinous incident in Islamabad. A girl is raped by two armed men inside F9 park who told her after rape not to go for walk after sunset. What country Pakistan has become? How armed men entered Park & why no staff caught them @ICT_Police? please find them & arrest them."

Another user said that those responsible for the “heinous incident” should be immediately arrested and brought to justice. “What is happening?"

Others expressed concern about whether the culprits would be discovered and punished for their crime, and professed a lack of trust in the police department of the capital city.

“The incident of alleged gang rape of a woman in Islamabad F-Nine Park is very worrying. Will this case be investigated on its merits? Will the accused be traced?”

One user also wrote of the responsibility of the government in ensuring that justice is severed swiftly for such criminals.

“The government should not be a party to such cases and severe punishment should also be meted out, otherwise powerful people are easily acquitted. Usman Mirza's case is an example of this.”