LAHORE - The two men involved in the gang rape incident on Lahore’s motorway are identified and a manhunt is underway to arrest them, police and top government officials said on Saturday. 

Punjab Chief Minister Usman Buzdar said the “real culprits” of motorway rape incident have been identified in less than seventy-two hours. While addressing a news conference in Lahore, he said the investigation of the case was started on a scientific line and he was personally monitoring the probe. “We have traced the accused in less than 72 hours of the incident and the investigation on scientific lines was also under way,” the chief minister said. “I have contacted the victim woman and assured her of providing complete justice.” He said the accused involved in such heinous crimes would not be spared any at cost.  

On this occasion, IG Punjab Inam Ghani said the accused would be arrested soon as the police were conducting raids on various places, including Qila Sattar Shah area in Sheikhupura. The police had traced record of the accused and investigation on modern techniques was being carried out. A police spokesman released pictures of both the suspects on the social media on Saturday evening. The suspects are identified by police as Abid Ali, a resident of Fort Abbas, Bahawalnagar and Waqar-ul-Hassan, who belongs to Qila Sattar, Sheikhupura.

The IG said other law enforcement agencies, including the CTD, were also conducting raids to arrest the accused at the earliest. Punjab Law Minister Raja Basharat and Punjab Information Minister Fayyazul Hassan Chohan were also present. While strongly condemning the despicable incident, he said he has personally contacted the victim woman and assured her of justice. He said action will be taken against the culprits as per the law.

The Chief Minister said that those providing information about the culprits will each be given cash prize of 2.5 million rupees. Usman Buzdar said he has directed the Punjab Police and other departments to take effective measures to prevent such incidents in the future. Punjab Police Inspector General was also present during the news conference. Also, Punjab Chief Minister Usman Buzdar said that Inspector General of Police (IG) Inam Ghani had issued a show-cause notice to Lahore Capital City Police Officer (CCPO) Umar Sheikh over his remarks in which he shifted blame for on the victim of the Lahore rape victim.

Two ‘robbers’ allegedly raped a woman at gunpoint in Gujjarpura area on Wednesday while she was waiting for help on the motorway after her car developed a fault. In his statement on the incident on Thursday, the CCPO implied that the victim shared responsibility for her rape. He claimed that the victim, who is a foreign national, thought it was safe to travel at night with her kids. He also said the victim was at fault for "choosing the route she took and not checking her petrol tank" before heading out.

Meanwhile, PML-N leader Malik Mohammad Ahmed Khan on Saturday filed a petition in the Lahore High Court (LHC) seeking to submit additional documents in an earlier petition challenging the appointment of Lahore Capital City Police Officer (CCPO) Umar Sheikh.  Ahmed is seeking the court's approval to submit additional evidence in the primary petition filed by him on Wednesday that challenged the Punjab government's decision to remove Shoaib Dastgir from the post of inspector general of police after he developed differences with the Lahore CCPO.

Ahmed's first petition in the LHC argued that pre-mature transfers in the police force violated the Police Order (2002) and the Punjab government's rules of business. The petition urged the court to declare notifications regarding the appointment of the provincial police officer and Lahore CCPO as "unconstitutional".