A Lahore district and sessions court on Friday extended the physical remand of cleric Abubakar Muaviya by three days in a child abuse case.

On Monday, Lahore police had obtained four-day physical remand of the cleric in a child rape case lodged at the Shahdara police station. An official said that the suspect was caught raping a minor boy and that they had taken him into custody from the spot.

The first information report, a copy of which is available with Dawn.com, was registered under Section 376 (iii) (rape of minor) of the Pakistan Penal Code.

Today, Lahore police presented the suspect before Judicial Magistrate Habiba Sarfraz and sought an extension in the suspect’s physical remand.

The cleric’s lawyer, Mian Dawood, said that the police should complete their investigation, adding that their position should also be made a part of the probe.

The court subsequently reserved the verdict. Later, it extended the cleric’s physical remand by three days.

The court also sought a report from the investigation officer at the next hearing.

A few weeks ago, Muaviya was arrested in a case lodged in Tandlianwala of Faisalabad on charges of raping a child.

He was later discharged from the case by a magistrate when the victim’s father told the court that the first information report (FIR) was registered against the suspect following some misunderstandings.

In a video that went viral on social media, he said had withdrawn the charges because he had forgiven Muaviya in the name of God. A renowned cleric had visited his house for mediation.

Later, Dawn learnt that a high-level police inquiry into the case had declared the acquittal of Muaviya on the mediation of a ‘Jirga/Panchayat’ a blatant violation of a previous Supreme Court judgment.

The Supreme Court’s landmark judgment had appeared in January 2019 when the legal status of the ‘council of elders’, ‘Panchayat’ or ‘kangaroo courts’ operating as alternative to the judicial system or for mediation in tribal belts of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and rural areas of Punjab, Sindh and Balochistan was challenged.

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