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Man who forcibly kissed woman in Lahore on Independence Day identified: Chohan

Police register FIR against 10-12 'morally unrestrained' men; arrests yet to be made

By Web Desk
August 21, 2021

Police have identified the man who harassed and forcibly kissed a woman near Lahore's Greater Iqbal Park, Punjab government spokesperson Fayyazul Hassan Chohan said Saturday.

However, Lahore police are yet to arrest the culprit, Geo News reported. A case has been registered at the Lari Adda police station on the station house officer's (SHO) complaint, after police were shown a video of the incident which went viral on social media.

The Punjab government's spokesperson, speaking to Geo News, said IG Punjab Inam Ghani had briefed him on the matter. 

Quoting Ghani, he said that a special team had been set up for the case — which will use all available modern, scientific methods to identify the criminals.

"In a day or two, we will trace them, and later on, will also make arrests," the spokesperson said.

Chohan said he could not confirm whether the criminal involved had been arrested, however, he assured the nation that the man has been identified using CCTV cameras.

"An example will be made out of this morally unrestrained man so that next time no person will dare harass a woman — who might be a mother, daughter, or sister — in Punjab," Chohan said.

The spokesperson said the provincial government would not show "any negligence to arrest the person" involved in the heinous act.

The FIR

According to the FIR, the incident took place on Circular Road, near gate no 1 of Greater Iqbal Park, towards Chand Chowk.

The FIR estimates 10-12 "morally unrestrained" men on board motorcycles to have harassed two women sitting on board a Qingqi rickshaw, with a child seated in between them.

The video shows the motorcyclists hounding the rickshaw, catcalling and leering at the women, besides making obscene gestures, stated the FIR.

"One of the men, wearing a white shirt and blue jeans, jumped onto the rickshaw to forcibly kiss one of the women on her cheek and also tried to tear her clothes off," it noted.

The other men, meanwhile, were constantly "hooting, catcalling, and leering at the women and making obscene gestures".

The video also shows one of the women taking her slipper off and threatening to hit a motorcyclist with it. The woman who was harassed, at one point in time, gets extremely upset and tries to leave the rickshaw in despair but is stopped from doing so by her companion.

The case has been registered under Sections 354 (assault or criminal force to woman with intent to outrage her modesty), 511 (punishment for attempting to commit offences punishable with imprisonment for life or for ashorter term), 294 (obscene acts and songs), 509 (ii) (word, gesture or act intended to insult the modesty of a woman), 147 (punishment for rioting), and 149 (every member of unlawful assembly guilty of offence committed in prosecution of common object) of the Pakistan Penal Code.

Chief Minister Punjab Usman Buzdar, responding to the incident, ordered the provincial police chief to submit a report and catch the culprits at the earliest.

The incident comes at a time when Pakistanis, especially women, are already on edge after the video clip of a woman being assaulted and harassed at the Minar-e-Pakistan on Independence Day went viral on social media.

The woman, a female TikTok star, said men groped her, beat her, and tossed her into the air for two-and-a-half hours.

The police today said they have arrested 66 people over their alleged involvement in the assault on the female TikToker.

Deputy Inspector General (Investigations) Shariq Jamal said that they have questioned over 300 people in the case so far. Of those, over 100 people were taken into custody for further questioning, the police officer said, adding that their whereabouts that day were traced using geo-fencing and face matching.

A case has been registered against 400 people in total.