The Supreme Court closed on Wednesday the case into the Kohistan video scandal, a case of the honour killing of five girls in Kohistan in 2012, and referred it to the Peshawar High Court instead.
According to the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government, the video in the incident was not fake. The additional advocate general informed the court that all nine suspects in the case have been arrested.
Five girls were killed in the Palas area in 2012 for clapping while male dancers performed at a wedding ceremony.
The Supreme Court had ordered the registration of an FIR in June and on August 1 an FIR was registered against the suspects. Kolai-Palas district police officer Iftikhar Khan had told the media on August 1 that the police registered the FIR under Section 364 of the Pakistan Penal Code. He said if the girls weren’t found, then the police could add Section 302 of the Code of Criminal Procedure to the FIR and arrest suspected killers.
The suspects – two fathers and two brothers of the girls — were arrested and presented before a judicial magistrate, who ordered their eight-day remand. They are being questioned about where the girls’ bodies were buried.
The girls were killed on the orders of a village Jirga. Afzal Kohistani had petitioned the Supreme Court in the matter after his three brothers were also killed after being seen dancing in the video that went viral on social media.
The Supreme Court had earlier ordered an investigation to ascertain whether the girls were alright following conflicting reports of their wellbeing. The families said they were in good health, while others said they had been killed. A judicial commission formed by the top court and headed by the Kohistan district and session judge had revealed that the families actually produced other underage girls and tried to pass them off as the girls seen in the video.
The court ordered the suspects’ arrest after it was verified by NADRA that the girls shown by the families were not the ones in the video.