Police release new CCTV footage of ‘person of interest’ in Zainab rape, murder case

Punjab police on Saturday issued fresh footage of a person they suspect of involvement in the kidnapping, rape and murder of 6-year-old Zainab in Kasur.

Zainab had left her house in the Road Kot area for her maternal aunt’s a few minutes away for religious lessons on January 4. She is believed to have been abducted en route. On Jan 9, five days after she disappeared, labourers found her dead body from a trash pile.

In the new footage, a bearded man bearing a resemblance to her abductor can be seen walking through the street where Zainab’s house is situated. The man is seen wearing a dark coloured cap, what seems to be grey shalwar kameez and a brown jacket.

Police have clarified that the man is only a ‘person of interest’ as of now.

Police say the new video will help them make headway in the case as it is clearer compared to the footage they had available earlier.

On Friday, police had confirmed that the results of DNA tests carried out in the case indicated the involvement of one culprit in at least seven similar cases that occurred in the district over the past year.

A source in the Punjab Forensic Science Agency (PFSA) told Dawn that the agency had received samples collected by Kasur police from the crime scene.

The samples were processed at the PFSA’s DNA and Serology, section where experts confirmed that the suspect had been behind several similar crimes in the city.

The source explained that the agency had conducted tests of samples obtained from victims in seven similar cases from Kasur, and, according to available records, the results of these reports indicated the involvement of the same person.

Police authorities have been given the report of the DNA test in Zainab’s case, the source said.

The inspector general of Punjab police had earlier told reporters that the JIT constituted to probe the case had received the DNA test results and investigations were underway.

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