Punjab Chief Minister Usman Buzdar has ordered suspension of five police officials for failing to respond in time to the public assault of a woman at the Minar-e-Pakistan in Lahore on Independence Day.
The chief minister presided over a meeting on Friday to review the progress made in the investigation so far. Inspector General of Punjab Police Inam Ghani presented a report, in which the role of police officials was also discussed.
The CM instructed the IGP to suspend the police officers.
The IGP removed Lahore DIG Operations Sajid Kayani, SSP Operations Syed Nadeem Abbas and Additional SP Operations Hassan Jahangir on the instructions of the chief minister. Badami Bagh DSP Usman Haider and Lorry Adda SHO Mohammad Jamil were suspended.
The provincial government also suspended the project director and deputy director of the Greater Iqbal Park.
Chief Minister Buzdar said the culprits will be handed down severe punishments and the victim will be provided justice.
He said that police response was delayed. “The people have high expectations from the police and they have to carry out their duties according to the aspirations of the people.”
The chief minister expressed grave concern over the public assault of the woman and some other recent incidents in Lahore. Angry over police performance, he said the police response to the woman’s call and other incidents has been slow.
The Minar-e-Pakistan assault came to light after a video went viral on social media, showing hundreds of men attacking a woman as she went to the park with four of her friends to celebrate Independence Day. The police had registered a case against 400 men for assaulting the woman.
NADRA REPORT: The Punjab police have taken 20 people into custody on suspicion of assaulting the female Tiktoker. The suspects have been handed over to the CIA for further interrogation.
They were detained from the nearby areas of the Greater Iqbal Park.
The authorities have shared the suspects’ details with the National Database and Registration Authority (NADRA) and are waiting for an identification report to proceed further.
The suspects were taken into custody after police obtained videos that went viral on social media of the horrific assault of the woman, who was making videos for her TikTok account at the national monument, on the occasion of Independence Day.
After NADRA sends its report, police will seek the victim’s help to identify the suspects.
MEDICAL REPORT: The Punjab government released on Friday the medical examination report of the victim giving details of the injuries she sustained during assault by hundreds of men.
Signs of inflammation were found on the body, the report said, adding that her neck, right hand and ears were swollen.
There are three scratches on the right side of her chest and scratches on her left arm, back and both legs.
There are also several bruises on her body, the report said.
THE VICTIM: Meanwhile, the episode triggered anger and widespread criticism of the prevalent misogyny in Pakistan after the video clip, showing a horde of men of all ages climbing a fence and attacking the woman, went viral on social media.
The victim told police that men groped her, tore her clothes, beat her, and tossed her in the air. They robbed her of Rs15,000 in cash, snatched her mobile phone, and took off her gold ring and studs.
Out of hundreds of men, many of who just stood there and even made a video, only one person came to the woman’s rescue and helped her get out of the park.
A case was filed against 400 people on the victim’s complaint.