In September 2015, Safia Bibi , a deaf and dumb Christian woman was raped at gun point in her house in village Gonda Ganda Singh Wala near Kasur. Three young men went to her house, two of them stood guard near the window while one, M. Umar allegedly committed the criminal act.

The Nation talked to Mr. Saleem Iqbal, The Director of Care Council of Human Rights to ask him about this case. He said on September 22, an FIR was lodged in the case on questioning the accused M.Umar accepted having committed the offence in front of the investigating officer. The other two are walking free, he added.

“The police was asked by Safia Bibi’s lawyers to interrogate the case on merit. During the court hearing Safia Bibi not only identified the person who raped her but also narrated the whole incident by sign language to file her testimony.”

Mr. Iqbal continued: “The medical test that was conducted when Safia Bibi went to lodge a complaint against M. Umer has been declared untenable as there are no marks of force being used, and secondly as she was a married woman, which made it very difficult to ascertain if she was raped or not. The other issue was that the DNA could not be preserved as it was raining on the day of incident and the woman was soaked wet on way to the Police Station resulting in the evidence being washed away.”

“The accused filed for bail which was granted without any hurdle as they were influentials of the area. Now Safia Bibi and her husband Khalid Masih along with their child have left the area due to threats being given to them to withdraw the accusation. However, they are not ready to take the case back and are seeking justice and plan to go to the High Court if needed. There are many loop holes in the police case which are being ignored. The couple were approached and offered money as compensation, which they accepted, yet they want the culprits to be punished.”

When asked if they were approached by any high officials or politicians as is done usually in such cases, he said, “We had sent our papers to Kamran Michael (the Advisor to the PM for Minority Affairs) but so far there has been no response from him.”

On being asked about the Shama and Shehzad burning case in which a group of people burnt the couple in a brick kiln in-front of their kids in Kot Radha Kishan alleging blasphemy, he added: “No one came forward to help them rather people watched as the couple burn to ashes. Once the news spread it was condemned in almost all quarters.”

“The case is going in the right direction and the government and the police have been very helpful.126 people have been arrested in the gruesome murder of Shama and Shehzad;(we hope) soon more would be arrested and punished for this crime.”

The kids of the burnt couple were a major concern for everyone and he spoke of their condition and how they have started fresh after their parent’s death. “The kids are still in a trauma as one of them saw the parents being thrown in the kiln. Even thou they are with the grandfather, they miss their parents as no one can take their place.”

Talking to The Nation he said that the financial conditions of children and their education was being looked after as the Government had allotted 10 acres of land to the children in Kot Radha Kishan and given them Rs 5 million as compensation to resettle themselves. The DCO Kasur is their guardian and every month they are getting some amount to cater to their basic needs. Along with all this Cecil Iris Chaudary Foundation is looking after their education needs.”

About rumors of Shama having being raped before being tortured and thrown in the kiln, he said, “Shama was not raped, nor has Aasia Bibi (in jail due to the blasphemy charges) been raped as it is rumored in certain quarters.”