Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan has called for public hanging and chemical castration of rapists as authorities report arresting a second man in connection with the rape of a woman on a popular highway in Punjab province this week last.
The woman was trapped in front of her children after her car ran out of gas on a highway near the eastern city of Lahore.
The incident drew a number of demonstrators to the streets of several cities, including Islamabad and Karachi, denouncing attacks on women.
“They [rapists] should receive exemplary punishments. In my opinion they should be hanged on the chowk [intersection]Khan said.
“The way murders are classified as first degree, second degree and third degree, rape should also be classified this way, and first degree rapists should be castrated and incapacitated completely.”
Police took 15 people for questioning on Thursday.
On Sunday, a man was arrested but denied any involvement in the crime. He is still in custody, but said he was misnamed in the case because his SIM card was being used by one of his friends, who was later revealed to be one of the suspects.
Police said on Monday they arrested one of the two attackers suspected of committing the crime.
Provincial chief minister Usman Buzdar said the man arrested on Monday, Shafqat Ali, confessed to committing the crime.
“His DNA matches and he also confessed to the crime. Our entire team continues to work on the arrest of suspect Abid Ali and we expect him to be arrested soon,” Buzdar said.
Lahore Police Chief Umar Sheikh faced an angry backlash and called for his resignation after the incident last week, after suggesting the rape was partly the victim’s fault.
Legal expert Osama Malik told AFP news agency that the rape conviction rate could be as low as 2%.
“It goes down even more in cases where a minor has been raped. This is one of the reasons rape is rarely reported,” Malik said.
He also blamed the social stigma attached to sex crimes and the “horribly misogynistic attitude” of many police officers for the underreporting of rape cases.
SOURCE: Al Jazeera and news agencies
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