LAHORE: Punjab Information Minister Fayyazul Hassan Chohan confirmed on Thursday that the victim woman identified both suspects including Abid Ali in Lahore’s motorway gang-rape case.
Fayyazul Hassan Chohan said that the victim also assured cooperation with the authorities for further investigation in the gang-rape case. He said that investigation into the gang-rape is almost concluded, however, one of the prime suspects is still at large. He also confirmed that wives, father and other close relatives of the suspects are taken into custody.
The information minister revealed that the investigators have managed to trace prime suspects including Abbas, MistriBala and Shafqat through Waqarul Hassan whose location was given by his neighbours for the greed of Rs25,000. The authorities had earlier tracked Waqarul Hassan by geofencing and later he surrendered before the police.
He further said that Capital City Police Officer (CCPO) Lahore Umar Sheikh tendered an apology for his wrong statement. On the other hand, Pakistan Muslim League Nawaz (PML-N) president Shehbaz Sharif had ashamed the nationals by giving a controversial statement. However, the PML-N president did not tender his apology on the floor of the House.
The police on Wednesday night claimed to have arrested five relatives of the prime suspect in the motorway gang-rape case, Abid Ali in Kasur. According to details, Lahore Police carried out an operation in Kasur’s area of Rao Khan on a tip-off that Abid Ali was present in the area during which five of his relatives were arrested.
It was learnt that two cousins, a woman and two other relatives of Abid Ali are among the arrested. Police sources said that prime suspect in motorway rape case Abid Ali had contacted these persons two days ago. The arrested persons would be brought to Lahore for further investigation.
Earlier on September 16, police had gotten the CNIC of the absconding prime suspect of the gang-rape on the Lahore-Sialkot Motorway blocked to stop him from fleeing abroad. According to the police, Abid, who still remained at large, will not be able to travel out of the country after his identity card having been blocked on their request.
Meanwhile, sources had relayed the police had persuaded the victim woman to visit the jail where the arrested suspect was detained to complete the procedure of identification parade which would be held in presence of the jail authorities and a judicial officer.
Protests were held in several Pakistani cities for a second day on Saturday over the handling of an investigation into the gang rape of a mother traveling with her children on a highway, as police said they were launching a manhunt for the suspects.
In Islamabad, several hundred protesters gathered, some waved French flags, and others held signs saying “hang the rapists.”
Hundreds, mostly women, also gathered in Lahore, Karachi, and even the conservative northwestern city of Peshawar. “Shatter the silence, stop the violence,” read one placard in Peshawar.