LAHORE: The provincial police officer, the incumbent Muzaffargarh district police officer and the former DPO are appearing before the Supreme Court of Pakistan today (Monday) in connection with the self-immolation of a 19-year-old girl.

Police authorities would present before the Chief Justice of Pakistan the so far police action into the incident, re-arrest of the rape suspect and status of the departmental inquiry.

Sources said the final findings of the fact-finding inquiry would be completed by the additional IG Investigation as of Monday night and would be submitted to the chief minister.

A police source privy to the inquiry told Dawn that incompetence and ‘criminal’ negligence by the investigation officer was initially established in the incident.

He said the IO only focused on one-sided version of the suspect and his seniors failed to look into the case actively by involving the girl and her family.

The girl, who was a college student and a resident of Lundi Pittafi village, and her mother kept visiting different police offices since Jan 5 (the date of attempted rape) till March 13 (the day of suicide attempt), but to no avail.

The source said the suspect, who wanted to marry the girl of his village, tried to assault her after she and her family rejected his marriage proposal. The suspect initially secured interim bail and was later declared innocent by the IO which led to withdrawal of his bail application.

The source said the announcement that the chief minister would visit the ill-fated family forced police to re-arrest the suspect.

But, the arrest of suspect Nadir even could not save police officers from government action as Dera Ghazi Khan Regional Police Officer Abdul Qadir Qayyum and Muzaffargarh DPO Usman Akram Gondal were removed from their posts while two DSPs, two SHOs and the IO were booked in another case.

Mr Qayyum, the source said, was surrendered to the federal government, following the orders of the chief minister and Mr Gondal would likely to be suspended from service after the Establishment Division had been officially approached by the Services & General Administration Department, Punjab. Both DSPs and SHOs are still at large.

Another source close to the investigation said a reporter and cameraman of a leading news channel who recorded the self-immolation scene outside Bet Mir Hazar Khan police station, were present before the girl and her mother came out of the police station where the SHO assured the girl of support.

He said it was strange after watching the footage that when the girl set herself ablaze, no body tried to save her rather acted as silent spectator.

Only the girl’s mother, the SHO and his subordinate, who rushed to the scene from the nearby police station, were seen extinguishing fire.

The source said it was established that the girl reportedly told the SHO that she could set herself ablaze after leaving his office, but he failed to take any preventive measure.

He said usually police took such protesters in protective custody and pursue legal action against them.

D G Khan DPO Dr Muhammad Abid, who has been given the additional charge, has changed the investigation of the case.

Meanwhile, the provincial government is most likely to post DIG Rehmat Niazi as new D G Khan RPO. Sources said Mr Niazi, who was relieved from Balochistan, had already been put at the disposal of the Punjab government.

They, however, said the panel was yet to be formed for appointing new Muzaffaragh DPO.

Authorities have appointed SP Muhammad Omer Saeed as Muzaffargarh SP Investigation against an existing vacancy. The post had been lying vacant for the last few months.

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