In an incident that has left people shaken and afraid for women's safety, a TikToker was groped and robbed by around 400 men in Pakistan on the day the country was celebrating the 74th anniversary of its independence from British rule.

Lahore Police has filed an FIR against hundreds of unidentified men for sexually assaulting the woman who was filming a TikTok video at Minar-e-Pakistan on August 14, the country's Independence Day. In a conversation with Daily Pakistan a few days after the horrific incident, the victim said in the midst of tears, "Is this the punishment for being one of Pakistan's daughters? I did not go there in any lewd clothes nor have I ever filmed lewd TikTok videos. I was in a proper dress."

The victim's salwar kameez and dupatta, the traditional and common attire for women in Pakistan, India, and some other nations, were torn off by the men as they threw her around. The ordeal lasted for over two hours until some of the people finally managed to rescue her.

She revealed that the entire thing started after some men approached her and her group of friends to click some selfies, but the gathering started growing larger. According to the FIR she filed with the police, a security guard at the Greater Iqbal Park had also tried to help her by letting her enter the Minar-e-Pakistan enclosure, but the mob overpowered the entrances and began assaulting her. The woman was also robbed of her gold jewellery, and the substantial cash she had on her.

The culprits also filmed their acts on their mobiles which soon went viral. Social media users mainly from Pakistan, and many from India, have been expressing shock and anger at the incident.

Meanwhile, Lahore Police are trying to track the numerous suspects who assaulted the woman and her companion with the help of the videos that are available on social media, as well as the photos and videos which were sent to the National Database and Registration Authority (Nadra). Capital City Police Officer (CCPO) Ghulam Mahmood Dogar was quoted as saying, "Those who misbehaved with the girl will be dealt with strictly."

A police official who asked not to be named told that at least 10 suspects had been identified and would be apprehended soon, adding that more suspects would be identified soon. The police have also issued an appeal to the public to help identify and arrest the suspects involved in the incident.

British Muslim women
Representational image Toby Melville/Reuters