A Pakistani Anti-Terrorism Court on Monday indicted the prime accused in connection with a case involving the rape and murder of a seven-year-old girl in Punjab, AFP reported. The crime had triggered nationwide protests.
The girl’s body was found in a heap of trash days after she went missing from near her aunt’s house in Kasur on January 4. She was on her way to a tuition centre, and her parents were in Saudi Arabia for Haj. Her death triggered massive protests in the district, where there have been 11 similar cases earlier.
Prime suspect Imran Ali Naqshbandi was arrested on January 23. The Lahore High Court had ordered the Anti-Terrorism Court to conclude the trial within seven days of the suspect’s indictment. The court has been conducting hearings daily since February 9.
Naqshbandi pleaded not guilty to sexually assaulting and murdering the girl, defence lawyer Mehr Shakeel Multani said. “The police have levelled baseless and false allegations against my client,” Multani told AFP.
The prosecution has submitted evidence that includes DNA and polygraph tests, CCTV footage and a medical report.