SARGODHA/BHALWAL/Mandi Bahauddin/SIALKOT/GUJRANWALA/BAHAWALNAGAR-People from all walks of life, especially lawyers, traders, students and civil society members here on Thursday held protest demonstrations and observed boycott of court against the rape and brutal murder of seven-year-old Zainab and the murder of protesters by the police in Kasur.

A condemning reference presented in District Bar room demanded early arrest the culprit. They also demanded protection of minor children. Furthermore, the students also observed protest against the tragic incident. They shouted slogans and paid solidarity with the parents of the victim.

The civil society protested at Trust Plaza while Peoples Youth activists observed protest demonstration outside Press Club.

In Bhalwal, complete strike and boycott of courts were observed by the Tehsil Bar Association due to barbaric act of rape and murder of the child.

The killing of agitators by the police, abduction, rape and killing of children in Kasur in particular and other parts of the Punjab in general, poor governance and such other heinous crimes by anti social elements were condemned by lawyer community.

When contacted, Bar President Khalid Khan told The Nation that all the Bhalwal lawyers were standing by the aggrieved family. He demanded the perpetrators of the rape and murder of Zainab be apprehended forthwith. He also said that Bhalwal Bar Association was ready to provide legal and financial assistance for the bereaved family of the victim.

The bar secretary requested the authorities to publically hang the culprits to deter such crimes.

Punjab Bar Association former member Sajjad Haider criticised the apathy and negligence of the law enforcement who have failed to protect the life and property of the citizens. He said that Bhalwal police failed to provide justice for the victim of another such incident namely Ali Raza.

Likewise, a large number of the people from all walks of life participated in agitational rallies taken out in Sialkot, Daska, Sambrial, Pasrur and surrounding areas to lodge their strong protest against the ghastly Kasur tragedy.

The local social, political, educational circles and civil society organisations took out the rallies in Sialkot district. The participants were carrying banners and placards and they also chanted anti-government and anti-police slogans. The participants also staged sit ins, demanding the hanging of the rapist-cum-killer publically. They also unanimously passed several condemnation resolutions, demanding speedy justice.

The Mandi Bahauddin-based people strongly condemned rape and murder of seven year old girl in Kasur. They blamed police and Punjab government for the gruesome incident. They said police were informed about disappearance of the girl but it did not act as required by law. They raised questions on the performance of police, saying police had become a tool of Punjab chief minister and worked to please him. Bribe and corrupt practices prevail in each police station and cases are registered at the dictations of politicians, they said.

Strong and wealthy rule police whereas the poor and indigents are treated as aliens when they visit police station for seeking justice, they said. Besides, loud claims of government for ending old police culture have served as hoax, they said.

The Gujranwala District Bar Association observed a strike against Kasur incident and no lawyer attended the courts procedure. In Toba Tek Singh, on the call of Punjab Bar Council, district and tehsils bar associations, the lawyers observed strike to condemn the Kasur police for killing three protesters during a demonstration over the issue. They held meetings of general body of bars where speakers held Punjab government responsible for the both incidents occurred at Kasur.

In Bahawalnagar, the district and all the tehsil bar associations of Bahawalnagar district observed a complete strike on Thursday against murder of the minor girl after rape in Kasur.

Talking to The Nation, Bahawalnagar District Bar Association general secretary Ch Ghulam Murtaza said that objective of observing strike is to express solidarity with parents of Zainab. He demanded the government arrest the culprit and award him exemplary punishment.

On the other hand, a large number of Civil Society members took out a protest rally from Commerce College Chowk to Rafiq Shah Chowk against the incident. Women and children also participated in the rally. The participants chanted anti-government slogans. They demanded exemplary punishment to the murderer of the innocent girl.

AJK protests police apathy, brutality

MIRPUR (AJK)-Hundreds of people especially schoolchildren, lawyers and journalists thronged the roads in various parts of Azad Jammu & Kashmir against the molestation and killing of 7-year-old Zainab in Kasur.

In Mirpur city, a large number of people brought out a procession from Allama Iqbal Road and marched through major city streets chanting slogans against the repeated incidents of child abuse in Kasur and various other parts of Punjab province.

The protesters were holding placards bearing slogans in support of their demands including immediate justice to the bereaved family of Zainab, the victim of the brutal molestation and action against the killers of protesters.

They demanded immediate arrest of the culprits and their hanging in public after summary trial. The brutal killing of the girl, the reported 12th incident of the identical nature that occurred within a two-kilometer radius of the Kasur city over the last year, ignited a wellspring of anger among the masses across Azad Jammu & Kashmir since Wednesday - like other parts of the country.