Two suspects in motorway gang-rape case ‘identified’
Punjab Chief Minister Usman Buzdar on Saturday evening announced that the government has reached the ‘real culprits’ in the motorway gang-rape incident.
“We worked day and night and launched a probe using scientific techniques. I personally monitored the progress and directed the completion of the probe expediently,” Buzdar said, adding that the ‘beasts’ involved in the incident will soon be arrested and given appropriate punishment as per the law. He added that he has directed the Punjab Police and other departments to take effective measures to prevent such incidents in the future.
Buzdar, responding to a question, said that the Capital City Police Officer Lahore Umar Sheikh had made an ‘irrelevant’ statement and he has been served a show-cause notice. “The IG has written a show-cause notice to him and summoned an answer in seven days […] After he responds, legal action will be taken,” he said.
Addressing the press conference, Punjab Inspector General of Police Inam Ghani said it was confirmed through scientific evidence last night that the primary suspect in the case is one Abid Ali, a resident of Fort Abbas in Bahawalnagar district. He said police initially only had the information that the DNA samples collected from the crime scene matched with the samples in government records of a minor suspect collected in some other case. “We dug through the records to obtain details of the suspect and got hold of his identity card and [cellphone] number. We traced him to his address and obtained all the details,” he said.
“After checking the record we had previously and the phones he had, we found that he had four sims registered in his name but he also had another sim not in his name. Geo-fencing confirmed his location and we were also able to reach his accomplice through this,” he said, adding that police was ’95-96 per cent’ sure of the identity of Ali’s accomplice, whose presence at the crime scene was shown by telephone data. “We were also able to obtain his address and CNIC number. We were ready by Saturday afternoon to conduct raids at their houses and arrest them but we found they were not in Lahore but in a village, Qila Sattar Shah, in district Sheikhupura,” he said.
“Unfortunately, because this information had gone into the public domain, the suspects had definitely received the tip-off that police was near them … When we went to [Ali’s] house, located between agricultural fields, in civilian cars and clothes, he along with his wife fled into the fields,” the IGP said. Police were able to locate Ali’s house and also found his daughter there, Ghani told the presser, adding that his nikahnama and other documents were also recovered.
He said Ali’s accomplice, identified as Waqarul Hassan, had also fled when police raided his house. “We have the entire record of both the suspects [and] police, CTD, CIA and Special Branch teams are after them,” the IGP said, adding that police is also using scientific aid available with intelligence