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Thursday, April 20, 2006 E-Mail this article to a friend Printer Friendly Version

LHC rejects Sonia Naz’s plea to cancel cops’bail in rape case

LAHORE: The Lahore High Court has dismissed a petition for the cancellation of the bail of two police officers accused of abducting and raping Sonia Naz.

The LHC observed that the conduct of Superintendent of Police Khalid Abdullah and Inspector Jamshed Chishty, who have been suspended, did not appear to constitute a threat or harassment of Naz and so there were no grounds to cancel the bail. The challan of the case has been submitted. Lahore Additional District and Sessions Judge Chaudhry Khaliquz Zaman granted the two police officers bail on November 24. On Wednesday, Naz’s lawyer Asma Jahangir argued that the police officers’ bail should be cancelled and their trial should be completed within a month because Naz’s life was in danger. She also asked for police protection for her client.

Jehangir said there was plenty of evidence against the accused and the corroborations of three witnesses, Naz’s father-in-law, mother-in-law, and a woman named Sajeela Sahar. She said the witnesses were being threatened. She said that Naz’s sister had been beaten up and hospitalised by her ex-husband, who was also a police officer. She said Naz was in hiding and could not enter Lahore.

She said the police were also trying to portray Naz as a woman of bad character. Chaudhry Riasat Ali, representing the police officers, argued that there were no grounds to cancel the bail of his clients. He said that the three prosecution witnesses had never actually stated that Naz had been abducted and raped. He said his clients had been the subject of a media trial, conducted by eager journalists who had convinced Naz it was the best way to go. He claimed that Naz had run up mobile phone bills of hundreds of thousands of rupees in long conversations with journalists. staff report