Police arrest seminary principal over alleged sexual assault, torture of minor girl in Pindi

Published August 23, 2021
The suspect had obtained pre-arrest bail in the case but was still arrested after two sections, related to child abuse and criminal intimidation, were added to the FIR. — AFP/File
The suspect had obtained pre-arrest bail in the case but was still arrested after two sections, related to child abuse and criminal intimidation, were added to the FIR. — AFP/File

Pirwadhai police on Monday arrested the principal of a seminary for allegedly sexually assaulting and torturing a minor girl, a day after the registration of a first information report (FIR) against the primary suspect and a female instructor.

Rawal Division Superintendent of Police (SP) Ziauddin told Dawn.com that the suspect had obtained pre-arrest bail in the case. However, he was still arrested after two sections — 377-B (sexual abuse of a child) and 506(ii) (criminal intimidation) — were added to the FIR on the basis of a statement made by the victim's mother.

"The senior superintendent of police (SSP) investigation and I will oversee the investigation ourselves on the instructions of Rawalpindi City Police Officer (CPO) Mohammad Ahsan Younis," he added.

Giving further details about progress made in the case, he said police were recording statements of the seminary's students to determine whether the suspect had tried to sexually assault any other female pupil.

SP Ziauddin said a case was registered against four people — all of whom have been arrested — for trying to help the suspect escape. The four people were the suspect's brother, nephew, the seminary's vice-principal and the administrator's son.

Furthermore, the seminary's teachers and staff have also been added to the investigation, the official shared.

Rawalpindi CPO Younis had earlier told Dawn.com that police respected seminaries but "abuse of students could not be tolerated".

"People who make minor children a target of [their] lust do not deserve any leniency. The suspect will be arrested soon and presented in court with concrete evidence so he can be properly punished," he said.

Meanwhile, medical reports confirmed that the student had been tortured, police said.

According to the FIR, the victim's father said his daughter had been studying at the seminary for the last seven years. He further stated that on the day of the crime he received a phone call from the seminary's management, requesting him to pick up his daughter as she had fainted.

The victim, upon regaining consciousness, informed him that the seminary principal had been trying to harass her for the last five to six months but she always managed to avoid him. The suspect had also been threatening the victim that if she told anyone about what he had been trying to do, he would kill her, the FIR added.

The FIR further stated that one of the teachers of the seminary took the victim into the principal's room where he attempted to sexually assault her. However, when the victim resisted, she was subjected to torture by both the teacher and principal.

The victim's father said that she was also given a medicine, following which she fainted and does not remember what happened to her afterwards.

The FIR was originally registered under sections 376 (punishment for rape) and 511 (punishment for attempting to commit offences punishable with imprisonment for life or for a shorter term) of the Pakistan Penal Code.

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