Kandhkot - Kandhkot police on Monday arrested Sardar Taj Mohammad Domki, a senior politician and influential feudal lord belonging to upper Sindh, after he claimed that he had "settled" a case involving the gang rape of a 12-year-old girl by imposing a fine of Rs1.8 million on the "real accused", reported Dawn News.

In May, media reported that a girl — a resident of Kandhkot in Sindh — had been working as a maid in Karachi when she was allegedly intoxicated and gang-raped. Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Mian Saqib Nisar had taken notice of the matter and summoned a report from the Sindh inspector general of police within a week.

In a sudden turn of events, at a press conference yesterday (Sunday), Domki claimed to have "settled" the matter through a jirga.

Domki claimed that the girl was not gang-raped, as claimed by her father, Urz Mohammad Golo, in a first information report, but raped by a single person. "The accused had raped the girl in Karachi after assuring her that he would marry her," Domki said.

The feudal lord claimed that had he not intervened in the matter, the girl would never have been able to get justice from the courts.

Domki's claims were problematic as they completely bypassed the legal infrastructure that seeks to protect rape victims and deals with such cases in accordance with Pakistan's Penal Code.

Dr Samiullah Soomro, senior superintendent of police (SSP) Kandhkot, on the directions of his seniors, ordered the registration of an FIR against Sardar Domki, Urz Mohammad Golo and 13 others on behalf of the state for settling the matter in a jirga.

"With Domki under arrest, the police is conducting raids to nab the remaining accused," SHO Mohammad Sadiq Odho told reporters.

He said that the FIR had been registered under Sections 310, 419, 117 and 143 of the Pakistan Penal Code on the complaint of ASI Mohammad Murad Lashari.