" We had asked both parties to record their statements for the court but the women’s relatives attacked the other side," SHO Munir Ahmad.
Six people were sprayed with acid by their rivals on Wednesday afternoon. According to police officials, the group was travelling in a van and sustained severe burns when four people from a rival group sprayed chemical acid on them after intercepting the wagon near Aminpur Bangla.
According to police officials, ten people had hired a wagon from Diyalgarh headed for the Nawan Police Station in Lahore where they were scheduled to record statements as witnesses in favour of three accused including Umar Hayat, who along with his two accomplicessprayed acid on his wifeNabila, sisters-in-law Shakila Munir and Razia, mother-in-law Riaz Bibi and Nazia, the wife of his brother-in-law over a domestic dispute last week.
A case was also registered with the Nawan Lahore Police Station on the complaint of Munir Ahmad, against accused Umar Hayat and his two accomplices under Sections 324 and 336 of the Pakistan Penal Code (PPC) but the accused are still at large.
Today, both the parties were summoned by the Investigation Officer and Nawan Lahore Police Station House Officer (SHO) Ch Abdul Majeed for investigation of the case. “We had asked both parties to present their statements and record them for the court but the accused and his family were attacked by the women’s relatives,” he said. The passengers in the wagon were headed to record their statements before the investigation officer in favour of the accused. “They were going to present evidence in favour of Umar Hayat and would have tried to prove that he had been wrongly implicated in the acid throwing case against his wife and her family,” the SHO said.
Police officials said that when the wagon reached near Aminpur Bangla on Faisalabad-Narwala Road, nearly 22 kilometres from Lahore it was intercepted by four people from the complainant Munir’s group. “Munir’s men stopped the wagon and sprayed acid on the passengers as revenge for what happened to the women of their family. The driver, conductor and four other passengers sustained serious injuries,” the SHO said.
Rescue 112 teams rushed to the spot and provided medical aid to the victims. Four of the burn victims were shifted to nearby hospitals in Aminpur Bangla, while two of the injured were shifted to Allied Hospital in Faisalabad. The doctors said that Naveed and Jaafar sustained serious burns to their face and their eyes have been permanently damaged. “They are in critical condition. Some have sustained over 70 per cent third degree burns and we are doing everything we can,” Dr Javed said.
SHO Police Station Sandal Bar Mazhar Hussain said that the police had recorded statements of the injured and a case would be registered on the receipt of a formal complaint.
Umar Hayat and his two friends allegedly threw acid on his wife and five other women of her family last week. According to police officials, Chak No132-GB Dijkot resident Umar Hayat attacked his wife Nabila and five women of her family after she refused to return home with him after a quarrel. Nabila came to her parents’ house saying that she feared for her life and refused to leave with Hayat when he came to take her back.
Umar also attacked five women of Nabila’s family, who refused to let him take her from their house near Nawan Lahore police station. “She refused to return with him.
She kept, saying that he beat her and that she did not want to put her life in danger”, a neighbour Manzoor said. The victims sustained serious injuries to their face and bodies. Shakila Munir is still under intensive care in the Allied Hospital Faisalabad.
Published in The Express Tribune, September 22nd, 2011.