The rape victim in Muzaffarabad, who had attempted to commit suicide after being physically abused by an influential person late last week, threatened to commit self-immolation along with her spouse and son if her tormentors are not brought to justice.“We need nothing but justice… They [the main and co-accused] should be given exemplary punishment,” said S* while talking to media persons on Wednesday.
The 25-year old victim, who is four months pregnant with her second child, was accompanied by her husband, H*, and mother.
“If we do not get justice, we will douse ourselves with [kerosene] oil and set ourselves on fire in front of the prime minister’s office,” she added, as her spouses nodded in agreement.
S* was reportedly subjected to the crime by a man named Raja on the outskirts of Chikar, a famous hill resort in the constituency of AJK Prime Minister Raja Farooq Haider last Friday.
The provisional medical report confirmed that she had been sexually assaulted.
The victim was on her way home from a nearby village, where she had gone to see her sister, when the accused, accompanied by two other persons, forced her to sit in his jeep.
After the co-conspirators got out of the jeep, the primary accused took the victim to a deserted shelter in the jungle and subjected her to sexual assault.
Later, the suspect dropped the victim near her home and threatened her with a terrible outcome if she approached the police.
The victim initially refrained from sharing the harrowing incident with her husband, H*, until the next morning. However, after being informed of the incident he advised her to forget about it, since they could do nothing to the tormentor due to his financial strength and tribal clout.
S* subsequently ingested poison in a bid to commit suicide and was eventually brought to Shaikh Khalifa bin Zayed al-Nahayan (SKZN) Hospital in Muzaffarabad for further treatment.
The Chikar police station received information about the incident from hospital staffers on Monday, following which an assistant sub-inspector reached medical facility and recorded her statement regarding her ravishment.
Following her statement, the police registered an FIR and have since apprehended the main accused Raja.
On Wednesday, the suspect was produced before a judicial magistrate in Hattian Bala, and was remanded to police custody for one week for further investigation.
Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP) Jhelum Valley Riaz Haider Bukhari told Dawn that the Deputy Superintendent Police and the concerned Station House Officer would conduct the interrogations jointly.
It should be noted that Raja Nayyar Naeem belongs to the clan of AJK Prime Minister Haider.
However, Raja Wasim, spokesman for the AJK premier, said in a brief statement that the accused “would be brought to justice.”
Names have been kept hidden to protect identities of the victims.