Sindh High Court reverses the decision of life imprisonment in rape case
The Sindh High Court (SHC) has reversed the life sentences of two men who were accused of rape and murder of a five-year-old minor that took place in 2010 in Gulistan-e-Jauhar.
The defendents had rejected the allegations. They also stated that they were physically tortured by authorities while they were detained. An additional prosecutor requested that their appeals be overturned by the High Court.
During the trial, the evidence was evaluated by a single bench. The bench was led by Judge Omer Sial. The court also determined that the vaginal swabs that were taken on 3rd November, 2010 were not sent for processing until 50 days. The swabs stayed in the police station during this time. The highcourt further noticed that the handkerchief provided as evidence was not the same color as the one that was collected by the police.
Moreover, the court stated that two witnesses cannot be trusted as their testimony was contradictory.
The complainant also revealed that people from the nearby mosque made statements about his missing child. However, despite of having spotted her with the accused, none of them knew where she was. Instead, they returned the next day to tell the complainant.
The high court criticised the manner in which murder and rape was verified when the corpse was sent to the doctor. The body, despite being in advanced stage of decomposition, had no signs of injuries on it, as told by the doctor. The doctor was also unable to determine if the victim had been raped before death or the exact cause of death.
The Sindh High Court came to a decision that if there was doubt in the prosecution’s case due to a lack of evidence or if discrepancies existed in the statements given by the witnesses, then the accused would be given ‘benefit of the doubt.’
The high court reversed the lower court’s decision.
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