Sharif Wali Kharmangi
Recently a first year college student was kidnapped in a car by two guys and taken to a nearby place, where she was brutally gang rapped by the two, just two days before the world celebrated the International Women’s Day. The next day, the affected girl came to the city police station and registered a case.
Police acted fast and captured the two suspects and filed cases against them under the Anti-Terrorism Act. Physical remand for the two alleged rapists was taken from a local court and currently the suspects are being interrogated.
The issue has been raised through the social media and a large number of the members of the region’s civil society and diaspora are urging the authorities to leave no stone unturned and punish the culprits for their heinous deed. There is a fear that if the criminals are spared this time, like in the past, then the culture of violence and rape can find roots in the society and the situation may soon spiral out of control.
When I talked to different people via the social media, so many opinions were there. Some say there might be involvement of the girl, without which it will never be possible. Some say that since the police has taken the suspects into custody it’s enough. The truth will come out and justice will be served. Many educated people are of the opinion that the issue shouldn’t be highlighted more because of its ‘sensitivity’.
In my opinion, based on information received from free sources and media reports, the brave student herself came to the police station and registered a case against the nominated culprits, so it is quite easy to handle the case. The incident also provides the society with an opportunity to speak against the crime and pave ways for putting a stop to the menace once and for all.
Skardu is a city where almost all social norms, practices and laws are set by religious authorities – from birth to death, marriages, family issues, property and business issues, even criminal and political issues are decided more by the informal Sharia-courts than formal courts. Also people feel themselves more comfortable in dealing their issues under a religious jurist. So, there’s a positivity in the system’s outlooks. And, no doubt, our religion and moral comfort concerns and satisfies not only today but from the beginning of Islamic history of the region. But for such immoralities and heinous crimes, we have not seen any harsh punishments in the past. Generally, the cases are decided by slapping fines on the perpetrators and then an agreement of peace/understanding is made, bringing the issue to an end. All of this is done by the religious jurists and socially influential people, for the sake of so called brotherhood and peace in almost every criminal cases, as far as I have seen. T
his is one of the reasons, one can think of, why after having so much high religious impacts on the people, the immoralities are growing day by day. One of my friend told me about a similar incident previous year. When they asked the Superintendent of Police to take action and give punishment by law to the proven suspects, the SP told him that they have to follow the Sharia and do Sulah. He told the SP, the Sulah is to be done among the people and law is to be followed for the crime committed. However, the powers that be preferred to do it their own way. It is therefore highly likely that if such so called “Sulahs” keep happening, then no crook would be punished in future and the crime rate will increase as from the recent cases we can see so clearly.
Mr Nisar Abbas GEO News, Dr Zaman of PTI, Manzoor Parwana Nationalist Leader, Shaikh Hasan Jafary Sahab Religious Leader, columnists, writers, journalists and all civil society workers and student activists are of the view that “any person who have sister and daughter, who have respect for his mother and sister, will never favor this kind of brutal deeds in any society.” And very truly so, because such actions are committed by those who has no respect and value to their mother, sister, daughter and wives. They are not taught and practiced humanity from their sires and family, that’s why they feel no shame committing such inhuman acts. I think, all of us, students, religious scholars, journalists, teachers, social workers, and security institutions will be responsible for such future brutalities, if we don’t come to ponder over the reasons and find precautionary measures to put an end to this menace in the days and weeks ahead.
The contributor can be reached at www.fb.com/msharifwali.