Saima Khanum

January, 2011

ISLAMABAD, PAKISTAN: A woman underwent burn injuries when a man flung acid on her after she refused to accept his marriage proposal, police and hospital authorities believed on Wednesday.

The incident came to light when Rescue-15 informed the Industrial Area police that a woman Saima Khanum, alleged to be in her 20s, had been brought to Pakistan Institute of Medical Sciences (PIMS) with burn injuries on September 3.

Saima Khanum was being treated at the hospital's burn unit where the doctors have stated that the woman has suffered 40 per cent burn injures, mostly to her face.

The police reached the hospital but the victim refused to give any statement until her family members arrived. Later, she told ROD that she had come to Rawalpindi along with her two teachers, including a male teacher (A.H.), who was her neighbor, on September 2 to get her educational certificates and degrees attested from Allama Iqbal Open University.

She affirmed they spent the night between September 2 and 3 in a hotel in Raja Bazaar. The next day they left for the university to get the certificates attested. When they reached the green area near the institution, the male teacher sought her hand in marriage.

However, when she turned down his proposal, he became angry after which he pulled out a bottle from his pocket and threw some substance on her. Both the teachers then escaped from the scene, leaving her behind in the wooded area.

She was rescued by Rescue-15 and shifted to PIMS for medical assistance.

The family members of the victim, including a cousin, who is an additional superintendent of Adiala jail, told ROD that they were not interested in lodging any complaint with the police about the incident.

They assumed a complaint of abduction had already been lodged with the police in Mandi Bahauddin against three persons, including the teacher, and investigations in this regard were under progress.

Industrial Area police said they had prepared a report about the incident in which they had stated that it was an acid attack case. They further claimed that the victim had not been subjected to rape.

The police said the family of the victim did not lodge a complaint about the incident therefore no medical examination of the woman was carried out.

Source: Ms Khadijah Shah (Rays of Development Organization)