ATC grants police 14-day physical remand of Zainab murder suspect

Members of Civil Society light candles and earthen lamps to condemn the rape and murder of seven-year-old girl in Kasur during a candlelight vigil in Islamabad Pakistan

An Anti-Terrorism Court (ATC) on Wednesday granted the police 14 days physical remand of the accused in seven-year-old Zainab Amin rape and murder case.

At a news conference in the provincial capital of Lahore, Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif identified the suspect as Mohammed Imran, 24, who was arrested near Kasur.

There has been no immediate comment either from the accused or his lawyers.

Earlier in the day, Kasur turned tense as residents surrounded the house of a suspect that the police said they had arrested in connection with Zainab's rape and murder.

The rape and murder of Zainab Ansari was the 12th such case in Kasur district in the a year ago, according to local media reports.

According to Sahil, an aid group that works on child protection issues, there were 129 cases recorded in Kasur, including rape and murder from January to June 2017. Almost 1,150 other DNA samples had also been tested apart from Ali's. Sitting alongside him was Zainab Ansari's father.

Sharif said the provincial forensics lab processed 1,150 samples of DNA before arresting Imran. She did not return for dinner.That night, when Aasia heard a girl had been found dead, she felt her legs weaken and her body convulse."I was heading towards where they said they'd found the body". I beg everyone that such fragile, sensitive, heart breaking stories shouldn't be politicized."When asked about the accusations that police failed to act on previous attacks on girls in Kasur, Sharif said: "I agree that there should be accountability for the previous seven girls who were attacked by this serial killer and rapist".

The chief minister said the suspect was arrested earlier but was freed when he complained that he had heart problems.

The people have demanded public execution of the murderer. During the initial investigation, police had examined the CCTV footage of the area in which the minor was shown walking with a stranger sporting a beard. The alleged abuse, thought to date back to at least 2009, was uncovered in 2015 and a number of suspects arrested.

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