Pakistan

LAYYAH (Staff Report) – A woman who lost her eyes in an acid attack has reportedly been gang-raped in Layyah district of Punjab, hospital sources said on Friday.

The victim, who is in her 30s, lost her eyesight in the year 2002 when she was attacked with acid.

Local police registered a First Information Report (FIR) at the Kot Sultan Police Station when she approached them on Friday. She also recorded her statement in which she claimed that she was gang raped by Younis and his two accomplices.

The woman, who hails from Bait Wasawah in Layyah, told the police that she used to regularly visit a man in Kot Sultan to collect zakaat (a form of alms) from him.

Earlier this week, however, the man invited her to his house where he had two other men as well. Together the three men subjected her to rape, the woman said.

She added that because of being blind she could not see her alleged rapists, but provided names of three men who she claimed were involved in the crime, the DPO said.

After the FIR’s registration, a special police team was formed under the Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP) to conduct raids in order to arrest the suspects named by the woman.

Police have ruled out any connection between the two incidents, and believe the men lured the poor woman to take her advantage.

The woman’s medical tests have been conducted and their reports are currently awaited, District Police Officer Mohammad Ali Zia, adding that every effort will be made to bring the men involved in the crime to justice.

According to police, the woman went blind in 2002 when her cousin attacked her with acid because she refused his marriage proposal. The accused was convicted and imprisoned for 14 years. However, he was released after serving only six years as the victim later pardoned him.

A hunt is on for the suspects, according to SHO Kot Sultan Shahid Rizwan.

The Human Rights Commission of Pakistan found that in 2015, 939 women were victims of sexual violence, 279 were victims of domestic violence and 143 women were victims of acid attacks. At least 833 women were kidnapped and 777 committed or attempted to commit suicide.

A total of 1,096 women, 88 men and 170 minors were victims of honour crimes over the past year. Between January and May 2015, nine were executed for rape.