RAWALPINDI: The counter-version of the two Norwegian national women – manhandled by officials at Benazir Bhutto International Airport – has been added to the case registered against them by airport police on a complaint filed by Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) officials.
The counter-version has been added to the case since there cannot be two FIRs over the same incident, police told Dawn on Thursday.
An investigation was launched against the FIA officials after the interior ministry took notice of a video that purportedly showed a uniformed woman brutally assaulting the two women in the airport’s departures lounge.
On Wednesday, the ministry had given the FIA DG three days to submit a report and had reprimanded the agency for not conducting an inquiry into the matter on its own.
Police have also written to concerned officials from all agencies – including FIA, Pakistan International Airlines and others – whose staff was on duty on April 15, when Haseena Khalid and her daughter Fauzia were assaulted by a lady constable.
Include victim’s counter-version in FIR; seeks lists of officials on duty for questioning
A senior PIA official confirmed that they had received a letter from police, seeking lists of staff that was on duty during boarding of passengers for PK-771 for Copenhagen, since police wanted to question them.
The two women, who were traveling to Oslo, had already been checked-in by the airline and received their boarding cards when the unpleasant situation occurred at the immigration counter, he said.
Following the circulation of the video showing the FIA official assaulting the two women, clips from CCTV footage of an earlier time have also emerged on social media.
These purportedly show the two women arguing with officials at the immigration counter.
Fauzia, a medical student at an Oslo university, has been under treatment since she was taken to hospital following the assault on Saturday.
Although doctors at Benazir Bhutto Hospital conducted a medico-legal examination of Fauzia on April 15, its report is currently ‘under observation’.
“She is terrified, unwell and is under treatment at a private clinic,” her father, Khalid Umar, told Dawn.
When asked when his wife and daughters would return to Oslo, he said: “We will go back only after the FIA allows us to.”
According to the airport police investigating officer, Mr Umar had made a statement claiming he apologised for what happened at the airport on behalf of his daughter.
A senior security official deputed at the airport said that no uniformed person was allowed to manhandle someone under the law, adding that there are legal ways to handle a suspect if he or she has committed a crime.
“If the women had committed any wrongdoing, they should have been handed over to the local police, which is usually done by the other security agencies at the airport.
“This is usually the case when contraband is recovered from any passenger or someone violates the law; he/she is handed over to airport police to initiate legal proceedings,” he said.
“No law authorises an official to manhandle any person,” he concluded.
Published in Dawn, April 21st, 2017