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‘Police under pressure to declare honour killing as suicide’


The Upper Chitral police on Tuesday arrested three suspects in the Lot Oveer honour killing case, sources in the police confirmed to ChitralToday.

But these sources also said some political figures were trying to influence the police investigations.

“Yes, we have taken three persons into custody for interrogation in the case,” a senior police officer supervising the case told ChitralToday requesting anonymity as he was not authorized to speak to the media on record.

He also said people of the area where the incident occurred were protecting the killer(s) and trying to term the killings suicide.
About a week back, a teenage girl and a young man were shot and killed in Lot Oveer village of Upper Chitral when they were sitting in a greenbelt beside an agriculture field.
No one came forward to report the case to the police neither relatives of the deceased registered an FIR.
A source in the district administration of Upper Chitral also told ChitralToday that there is the possibility of the involvement of more than one person in the honour killing incident.
The source, who had seen the dead bodies, said the body of the young man showed marks of tortures, including bruises, indicating he was beaten up by clubs etc., and then shot dead.
After receiving information about the incident, the police conducted postmortem on the dead bodies and handed them over to the relatives. Both the girl and the young man were unmarried.
“A known political figure from the ruling political party (PTI) is trying to influence the police investigations and wants withdrawal of the police FIR,” the police official said.
He also said the area residents and political figures were spreading rumours that the girl and the young man had committed suicide.
But the sources added that District Police Officer (DPO) Zulfiqar Ahmed Tonali was personally supervising the investigations. They confirmed that the the teenage girl and the young man were killed for honour.
The initial police investigations and evidence suggested that the girl and the man were shot dead and the police have recovered empties from the crime scene. The police official said a team was investigating the case without any pressure.
ChitralToday corroborated the allegation regarding political pressure from three independent sources in the police and they confirmed it.
Moreover, the DPO while talking to ChitralToday on June 20 had also confirmed that the girl and the young man were killed for honour. 
A few years ago, a legislation was made under which the state becomes the complainant in honour killing cases in order to rule out the possibility of a patch-up between the families but even then conviction rates in such cases remains low across the country. 
In the Lot Oveer honour killing case, neither any relative of the young man nor of the girl approached the police to register an FIR.
As a result, the case was registered with the police (state) being the complainant against unknown persons.
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