ABBOTTABAD: The chilling murder of a 17-year-old girl strangled and set on fire in Galyat’s Makol village of Abbottabad has been linked to the orders given by a local jirga last week, police said Thursday.
Abbottabad police said a 15-member jirga called by the Makol village councillor Pervez ordered for the deceased, Ambreen Bibi, to be killed and set on fire as punishment for helping her friend escape the village to marry of her free will on April 29. Fourteen members have been arrested and due to appear before an anti-terrorism court, including the victim’s mother.
The jirga, headed by Pervez, a local government councilor who has also been arrested, decided to punish Ambreen for allegedly helping her friend Saima elope and get married to the man she loved.
Saima ran away on April 23, locals said. Saima’s father, who had been out of town at that time, returned to the village on April 24, and started looking for his daughter. He and some other locals alleged Ambreen’s involvement in facilitating Saima’s marriage.
A jirga was held where Pervez, together with other elders, decided to punish Ambreen and “set an example.”
Ambreen was drugged till she fell unconscious and then, was strangulated to death. She was then tied up to a seat inside a minivan and set ablaze. Another vehicle parked near the gutted van was also damaged. Police moved the Ambreen’s charred body to Ayub Medical Complex for an autopsy.
The girl was later identified as the daughter of Riasat, a labourer who works in Balochistan’s Gadani area.
An FIR has been registered against the jirga members in the case under Section 302 of Pakistan Penal Code and Section 7 of Anti-Terrorism Act. Those arrested include Ambreen’s mother and father.
Meanwhile, Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) MPA Shaukat Yousafzai has said that strict action will taken against the jirga which ordered the brutal ruling. “This is not a part of KP’s culture. This is the first time an incident of this type has taken place,” he said.
He hailed the role of the local police for solving a case “that shook the entire Khyber Pakhtunkhwa” and lauded them for taking the investigation forward in a professional manner. NNI