Riots erupt in Kasur against murder, rape of 7-year girl


Two killed in police firing; CJ LHC takes suo motu notice; PM, COAS, CMs, federal, provincial ministers, leaders of political parties condemn heinous act, call for bringing culprits to book

Salim Ahmed


At least two people were killed, several others injured and arrested as police takes action against the citizens holding protests against the murder of eight-year-old Zainab after rape on Wednesday.
The Chief Justice (CJ) Lahore High Court (LHC) Justice Mansoor Ali Shah taking the notice of the incident has directed the Punjab police and District and Session Judge for a report into the incident.
The Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Qamar Javed Bajwa, Provincial Chief Ministers, Federal, Provincial Ministers, MNAs, MPAs, heads, leaders of various political and religious parties including Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP), Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI), Pakistan Muslim League (PML-Q), Awami Muslim League (AML), Jamaat-e-Islami (JI), Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam (JUI-F) and others strongly condemning the inhumane act have demanded the authorities concerned to culprits to book.
Seven-year-old Zainab, a resident of Rod Kot area of Kasur, was kidnapped on her way to tuition centre on January 05. Her body was found in a garbage pile near Kashmir Chowk after four days. Initial postmortem said, the minor was strangled to death after being raped, adding that the girl was raped multiple times. When the incident occurred the minor’s parents were in Saudi Arabia, where they had gone to perform Umrah.
On Wednesday residents agitated against alleged police inaction over the rape and murder of an 7-year-old resident of the city. Two people were killed by gunshot wounds as enraged protesters armed with sticks and stones attempted to storm the deputy commissioner’s office and were repelled by police. Two others were injured in the clashes, hospital sources said.
Television footage showed a policeman firing into a crowd before being told to fire into the air, but it is not yet clear whether police are responsible for the deaths of the protesters.
The brutal murder of the girl has incited anger among residents as it is the 12th such case to occur within a two kilometre radius in the city in the last year.
Former PM Nawaz Sharif’s daughter Maryam Nawaz called for an exemplary punishment to the culprits. “I hope and pray the culprits are not only brought to justice but made an example of,” she tweeted. Jamaat-e-Islami head Siraj ul Haq submitted an adjournment motion in the National Assembly, condemning the rape and murder of seven-year-old Zainab. The COAS condemned cold blooded murder of innocent Zainab.
Responding to appeal by the aggrieved parents the COAS, directed immediate all out support to civil administration to arrest the criminals and bringing them to exemplary justice.
Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari termed the rape and murder shocking. Bilawal was critical of the provincial government, demanding immediate action against the culprits. Zainab’s father claimed that police “did not cooperate” with them.
The enraged citizens armed with sticks and stones stormed the deputy commissioner’s office in protest over police inaction. At least two protesters were killed by firing in the ensuing clashes, and two others injured, hospital sources said.
People from other parts of the county took to social media to share their anger and outrage over the murder, using the hashtag #JusticeForZainab.
Punjab Chief Minister Muhammad Shahbaz Sharif has taken strict notice of the murder of 7-year girl in the area of Kasur and directed to immediately arrest the culprits. The Chief Minister has sought a report from IG Police. He assured the parents of the deceased girl that the criminals would not escape exemplary punishment. He also extended sympathies to the bereaved family.
The CM presided over a meeting during which he reprimanded the police officials with regard to incident of murder of a girl in Kasur. He termed the incident as most tragic and made it clear that criminals must be arrested and no laziness will be tolerated. He made it clear that action will also be initiated against the concerned police officers for showing negligence and added that such tragic incidents could not be tolerated at any cost.
Chief Justice of Lahore High Court (LHC) Mansoor Ali Shah on Wednesday took notice of the rape and murder of a seven-year-old girl in Kasur. LHC CJ has also sought report from police officers and session judge in Kasur. While strongly denouncing the mishap, he vowed to bring the culprits to justice at any cost.
Funeral prayer of seven-year old Zanaib, who was brutally raped and murdered in Kasur, was offered amid tense and mourning environment in the area. Hundreds of thousands people attended the funeral prayer which was offered by head of Pakistan Awami Tehreek (PAT) Tahirul Qadri.
Parents of the innocent girl could not attend the funeral prayer due to their stay in Saudi Arabia for Umrah offering.
After the funeral Qadri strongly condemned the incident and termed it humiliation of mankind and said that he came there to share the mourning of the area people. “Today once again the incident of Model town was repeated and police in vicious act killed two innocent persons and injured several which clearly showed that the rulers failed to protect the life and property of the people.

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