Feudal lord 'settles' rape case of 12-year-old girl through village council in Pakistan

Feudal lord 'settles' rape case of 12-year-old girl through village council in Pakistan
The influential local claims had he not intervened, the girl would have never be able to get justice from the courts.
PHOTO: Dawn

A senior politician and influential feudal lord belonging to upper Sindh region, Sardar Taj Mohammad Domki, has claimed that he had settled the gang rape case of a 12-year-old maid servant and imposed a fine of Rs1.8 million (S$24,000) against the "real accused".

He announced this on Sunday during a press conference at his residence in Kandhkot town.

The 12-year-old girl, a resident of Kandhkot town in Sindh, was working as a maid at a house in Karachi where she was allegedly intoxicated and gang-raped.

Domki claimed that girl "was not gang-raped as claimed by her father Urz Mohammad Golo in a first information report but was raped by a single person".

"The accused had raped the girl in Karachi after assuring her that he would marry her," he said. The feudal lord claimed that had he not intervened in the matter, the girl would never be able to get justice from the courts.

Highlighting the loopholes in the FIR, he said that the complainant had nominated the father and his two sons, whereas, Domki argued that "it was next to impossible that a minor girl could be raped by two brothers and their father."

Sardar Domki further claimed that now the complainant would file an application in the court to withdraw the case as per the rules set during jirga (village council) held a few days back.

The feudal lord said that he was satisfied that both parties agreed on the decision made under his supervision.

Seven persons were nominated in the FIR, including Rahib Sorhiani, his two sons and nephews under Sections 337 and 376 of the Pakistan Penal Code on account of rape and injuries.

Chief Justice of Pakistan Justice Saqib Nisar had also taken a notice of the incident on May 11. The crime reportedly took place in Malir Cantt area of Karachi.

The action followed media reports that a girl - a resident of Kandhkot town in Sindh - was working as a maid at a house in Karachi where she was allegedly intoxicated and gang-raped.

When contacted, a police official Mohammad Moosa at Kandhkot town said that three of the seven accused - Saqib, Sheeraj and Apno - were in jail under judicial remand.

He added that police was unaware of any jirga as claimed by Sardar Domki.

The National Assembly Standing Committee on Human Rights had directed the Ministry of Human Rights to get details of the incident and submit a report at the earliest.

Committee chairman Babar Nawaz Khan said such incidents could only be eradicated by ensuring strict action against the accused.

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