3rd suspect emerges as another victim comes forward in Quetta video blackmail case

Published December 11, 2021
Members of civil society protest in Quetta against recent incidents of girls being blackmailed and filmed. — Photo by author
Members of civil society protest in Quetta against recent incidents of girls being blackmailed and filmed. — Photo by author

A third suspect came to light as a second first information report (FIR) was registered on the complaint of another girl in a case related to the filming, raping and blackmailing of girls in Quetta, police revealed on Friday.

Police officials had confirmed on Thursday that two brothers, H* and K*, were arrested and being investigated for their alleged actions against two sisters, who are missing and police believe they have been abducted.

Quaidabad police had registered an FIR against the two brothers on the complaint of the girls' mother.

Quaidabad Superintendent of Police (SP) Irtaza Qumail told Dawn.com on Friday that interrogation of the two suspects continued and they were on 14-day physical remand with the police. Today, he said a third girl had come forward with complaints against the two suspects and a third individual.

SP Qumail said raids were underway to arrest the third suspect and a letter had also been written to the Federal Investigation Agency's Cyber Crime Wing for help in the matter.

The second FIR was registered at Quaidabad police station on the complaint of N* under Sections 354-A (stripping woman of her clothes), 376 (punishment for rape), 376-A (disclosure of identity of victim of rape), 496-A (enticing or taking away a woman), 503 (criminal intimidation) and 506-B (punishment for criminal intimidation) of the Pakistan Penal Code.

According to the FIR registered on December 6, the girl said that around two years ago she was searching for employment with her friend and they eventually went to a house at Quetta's Nechari road. She said the two met H* and K* there who resorted to violence once the two girls broached the topic of job prospects.

"They recorded videos of ours and threatened us with them, forcing us to meet whenever they called us," the FIR quoted her as saying. She said they were repeatedly called over to different places over the next few days and their nude videos were shot.

The FIR said that during one such instance, she went to a house where other girls were present who said they were also blackmailed, adding that the two suspects raped them and shot nude videos.

"I have seen [the videos] with my own eyes. This practice is repeated many times a day with different girls," the FIR quoted N* as saying. She said there was another individual, S*, at the house who also raped girls and blackmailed them after recording their videos.

The FIR said that when N* refused to meet after she received a call from them, K* and S* had made a fake Facebook account using her name and uploaded her videos and photos. She said she had captured the evidence on a USB and requested the initiation of legal proceedings against the suspects.

'This is our war'

Balochistan Chief Minister Mir Abdul Qudoos Bizenjo issued a statement on the matter and gave directions for the investigation to be expedited.

He said the third suspect's arrest and the recovery of the abducted sisters should be ensured and police should use all available resources at their disposal.

"Those who play with the dignity of mothers and sisters do not deserve any forgiveness," the chief minister said. He said Afghan authorities were in contact with for the recovery of the missing girls and the affected families should be satisfied.

"This our war now," he said.

Quetta Deputy Inspector General (DIG) of Police Syed Fida Hassan Shah had said on Thursday that the two kidnapped girls, whose mother was the complainant in the first FIR, had last been traced in Afghanistan's capital of Kabul and police were trying to tackle the issue at the international level.

Meanwhile, members of civil society, human rights organisations and citizens protested against the culprits in front of Quetta Press Club on Saturday.

The protesters made various demands such as strict punishment for the culprits, measures for the protection of the affected girls, removal of the videos from social media and safe recovery of the missing girls.

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