Parents of converted Hindu girls cry foul over Pak SC decision

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Parents of converted Hindu girls cry foul over Pak SC decision

April 19, 2012


Pakistan : The Pakistani parents of three Hindu girls who were kidnapped and forcibly converted to Islam claim that powerful people were behind the drama. They said the girls’ decision to stay with their Muslim husbands was not taken in an open court and hence questionable. Tahir Ali reports from Islamabad

The family members of the three Hindu girls who were allegedly forced to convert to Islam claim that injustice has been done to them.

Following the Pakistan supreme court’s decision that the women should decide their own fate, the registrar’s office of the SC announced that the girls preferred living with their husbands rather than with their parents.

The families, however, said that the decision was not taken in an open court and hence questionable.

The supreme court of Pakistan had asked the girls — Faryal (Rinkle Kumari), Hafsa Bibi (Dr Lata) and Haleema Bibi (Asha Kumari) — to decide whether they want to live with their Muslim husbands or with their Hindu parents.  

Dr Ramesh Kumar, patron-in-chief of the Pakistan Hindu Council, had moved a petition asking for the recovery of the three women belonging to the Hindu community, Rinkle of Mirpur Mathello, Dr Lata, daughter of Jacobabad, and Asha of Larkana.

The three-member bench headed by Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry ordered the police to provide adequate security to the women and said that in case of any harm, the police officials would be blamed for negligence. The court said that the women were old enough to make the right decision themselves.

But their family members have complained that they were not allowed to meet their daughters and said the decision should be taken in an open court.

Talking to rediff.com, Nandlal, the father of Rinkle Kumari, said, "Today the girls were produced before the court but we were not allowed to meet them. Even if we were provided with five to 10 minutes of mulaqaat (meeting), it would have been enough for us. Even five minutes would have been enough, but we were not lucky enough to see our girl. We don’t know where the girls are now."

Nandlal, who is a school teacher by profession, said all the three girls wanted to go back to their parents but they were not allowed, as powerful people in the government were backing the kidnappers. "When the case was brought to Gotki in Sindh, Rinkle was weeping and said she wanted to go to her parents, yet she was sent to Darul Aman (shelter centre). We were always kept outside the court, whether it was in Sindh or Islamabad. In Gotki the decision was announced at 7.45 am while the official timing of the court starts from 9 am," said Nandlal.

Sulchhani Kumari, Rinkle Kumari’s mother, was inconsolable. She said she could not survive without her daughter. "Judgesahib, I need justice; I need my daughter back; I can’t leave without her; I can’t live without my Rinkle," she told rediff.com.

Showing displeasure over the court’s decision. the parents and other family members of the Hindu women observed a sit-in in front of the supreme court building raising slogans, ‘We need our girls back’, ‘Judge sahib we demand justice’.

The family members of young Asha Kumari were also present in court hoping to see her. She was allegedly kidnapped from a beauty parlour. For more than 40 days there was no news of her whereabouts. She later appeared before the court and said she chose to change her religion. However, her family members claimed that she was forcibly converted to Islam.

"Forty-five days have passed since my daughter was abducted. We were hoping to see her but when she was produced in court we were not allowed to see her. She was abducted and the kidnappers first sent us her photos and asked for a ransom, but later it was dubbed as a conversion case. It is purely a case of ransom, and religion has nothing to do with it," Asha Kumari’s father told rediff.com.

Sundardas, Asha Kumari’s uncle, said that Mian Mittho, a Pakistan Peoples Party parliamentarian who was blamed for helping the kidnappers, was allowed to meet the girls while the parents were kept at a distance.

"Tell me, is he important or the parents? No one is here to listen to us. We ask President Zardari to deliver justice, if he can’t do that the minorities should be sent abroad," Asha’s uncle told rediff.com.

"The kidnappers are going inside (the court); several of their people are inside, but no one from our side is allowed to get in. We don’t know what to do now; I just need my sister, nothing else. We will sit here and block the road till we get justice," said Simran , Asha Kumari’s sister. 

She feared that her sister would be sent back to her kidnappers. "All these people are working as a unit; we are Hindus so they are treating us like this. We came to Islamabad to get justice but we got nothing," she added.

When rediff.com asked Asha Kumari’s mother for her comment on the court’s decision , she replied in a choked voice, "I need my daughter; I need justice."

Earlier, the father of Dr Lata, Ramesh Kumar, told the media that religion was being used to kidnap young girls and to satisfy sexual desires. "Only young girls are converted to Islam. If they (abductors) want to spread Islam why don’t they convert old Hindu women and men?" he asked.

Source : Rediff


"Kill me here in court, but don’t send me to Darul-Aman" says Rinkle Kumari

April 8, 2012


Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Pakistan has ordered Rinkal Kumari and Dr Lata Kumari to be sent back to Karachi shelter home for 3 weeks to give them time to “think”. Would he have done that if they had given statements in favour of their kidnappers?

Here is the account from a family friend of Rinkal’s” “When Rinkal came into court, without letting her meet her parents/mother, she (Rinkal) was brought to give statement in front of CJP, she only stated that she doesn’t want to go anywhere, BUT her mother. Then CJP met with Rinkal alone for about 20 minutes, and then let her mother meet her for only 10 minutes. Afterwards Rinkal was crying before CJP, she wanted to go to her parents. CJP said, girl wants to go with her parents but there is confusion as the girl had embraced ISLAM and had spent married life, so how can she turn around from her previous statement ? Therefore, he ordered Rinkal to be sent to shelter home for more 3 weeks to think, along with Dr. Lata, who was sent to Shelter home on same grounds. Is this justice?? Chief justice should have backed innocent girls, supported them and should have ordered immense and appropriate action against Mullah and involved culprits, BUT after all he is a Muslim as well, he has intentions to book a plot in heaven as well…”

Rinkal Kumari statement in court :

” Pakistan mein sab log ek doosre ke saath mile huwe hain, yahan insaaaf sirf muslaman ke lye hai, Hindu ke lye koi insaaf nahee hai, mujhe yaheen court room mein maar daalo, lekin Dar-ul-aman nahee bhejo, yeh sab log mile huwe hain yeh humein maar daalen ge“. Translation: (Everyone in Pakistan is hand in glove, there is justice only for Muslims, there is no justice for Hindus. Kill me here in court, but don’t send me to Darul-Aman, all these people are hand in glove, they will kill us) – KTN news channel live reporting captured on a personal camera – the reporter repeats Rinkals words quote-un-quote.

Source : Indus Asia Online Journal


Hindu girls are forced to marry Muslims: Pakistani president Zardari’s sister

March 16, 2012

ISLAMABAD : Acknowledging that Hindus face a lot of challenges in Sindh, sister of Pakistan president Asif Ali Zardari said in Pakistan’s parliament on Thursday that Hindu girls are being forcibly kept in madrassas in the province and are forced to marry Muslims.

The remarks by Azra Fazal Pechuho, a lawmaker of the ruling Pakistan People’s Party, came against the backdrop of the Pakistan supreme court’s recent directive to authorities to produce three Hindu women who were allegedly kidnapped in Sindh.

Two of the women – Rinkle Kumari and Lata Kumari – have told magistrates they voluntarily converted.

Speaking in the National Assembly or lower house of parliament on the issue of Rinkle Kumari, Pechuho said Hindus faced a lot of challenges in Sindh.

She stressed the need for laws to protect the rights of minority communities and to end forced conversions.

Nafeesa Shah, another lawmaker from Sindh, endorsed Pechuho’s stand and said parliament should introduce legislation on forced conversions.

Source : TOI


Forced conversion of Hindus in Pakistan jolts US out of slumber 

March 14, 2012


O Hindus, take a note that Indian Politicians are keeping mum totally on the plight of Hindus in Pakistan, while US lawmaker have written ‘sharply-worded’ letter to Pakistan. These same Indian politicians will start talking whenever ‘something’ will happen to minorities in India. Now it is time for Hindus to unite and establish Hindu Rashtra to change this situation !

Washington (USA) : Pakistan’s state-endorsed discrimination, and in some cases extermination, of its minorities has finally caught the eye of Washington lawmakers. Coming on the heels of support in Congress for a Baloch homeland in the face of Islamabad’s depredations in the region, a US Congressman has zeroed in on the abduction and forced religious conversion of Hindus in the country highlighted by the case of Rinkel Kumari.

In a sharply-worded letter to Pakistan’s President Asif Ali Zardari, Congressman Brad Sherman urged him to take action to ensure the return of Rinkel Kumari to her family, pursuant to reports that she had been abducted with the help of a Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) lawmaker. In a case that has been widely reported in the liberal Pakistani media, Rinkel, who was abducted on February 24, was forced to marry one Naveed Shah and convert to Islam.

She was subsequently produced before a civil judge twice, but she was reportedly coerced into claiming that she had converted on her own will, even as her family was denied access to her in kangaroo court proceedings that revealed in video clips to be led by a frenzied mob of zealots, including armed followers of the Pakistani lawmaker. According to Pakistani civil liberties activists in Washington DC, Rinkel was allegedly threatened while in police custody that if she did not change her statement, she and her family would be killed.

”Rinkel Kumari’s case is just one case of abduction and forced religious conversion in Pakistan,” Congressman Sherman said in the letter to Zardari, citing the Asian Human Rights commission figure of 20-25 kidnappings and forced conversions of Hindu girls in Sindh every month. ”I urge you to take all necessary steps to bring an end to this practice and other harassment of Hindus in Pakistan.”

The Rinkel Kumari case was brought to the attention of US lawmakers not by Hindu activists but by the Sindhi American Political Action Committee (SAPAC), a lobby group that, like the Baloch groups, is increasingly asserting the secular and syncretic identity of Pakistan’s Sindhi community in the face of growing Islamization in the country. Sapac activists are telling US lawmakers that state sponsored discrimination against minority groups in Pakistan is rampant and is causing Hindus to migrate out of Pakistan in droves.

Hindus, who constituted more than 15 per cent of Pakistan’s population soon after Partition, have now dwindled to less than two per cent, mostly in some districts of Sindh. There have been several reports in recent months of Hindu families seeking to migrate to India in the face of growing radical Islamization of Pakistan, including abduction and forcible conversions, but it is the first time that Washington, which literally slept over Pakistan’s genocide of Bengalis in 1970-71, is paying attention to the issue.

US interest in the Rinkel Kumari case comes close on the heels of sudden support in Congress for Baloch self-determination, an effort led by California lawmaker Dana Rohrabacher. That effort has rattled Islamabad to the extent that it has told American interlocutors that Pakistan-US ties will be deeply affected if Washington interfered in Balochistan, even though the Obama administration has clarified that support for an independent Balochistan is confined to the Hill, where lawmakers are free to introduce any legislation they deem appropriate. That in turn resulted in Sherry Rehman, Pakistan’s ambassador to the U.S.,, writing to House Speaker John Boehner, expressing deep concern over Congressional action on Balochistan.

Source : TOI


Pak : Abducted Hindu girl Rinkle Kumari forced to mary

March 9, 2012


Karachi (Pakistan) : “Give us our Rinkle back. Give us the daughter of Sindh back,” demanded the relatives of the 17-year-old Hindu girl who was allegedly kidnapped, forced to convert and married to a Muslim boy last month.

Rinkle Kumari’s relatives came from Mirpur Mathelo in Ghotki district and staged a protest outside the Karachi press club on Sunday. Christians and Sikhs came out in support.


The protesters wore black armbands and held aloft well-written handmade posters saying ‘Where should we go?’ and ‘Send Rinkle to a Karachi women’s shelter’.They kept up a chant demanding her ‘release’. One of her maternal uncles, Raj Kumar, said furiously, “Pakistan Peoples Party MNA Mian Abdul Haq and his men abducted our daughter at gunpoint. We want justice.”

The family claims that Rinkle was kidnapped from her home in Mirpur Mathelo by Haq’s men on the night of February 24. She was then taken to Bharchundi Sharif, where Naveed Shah, a supporter of the politician, forced her to convert to Islam and married her, albeit without her consent, they say.

On February 25, the family says, Rinkle refused to go back with the kidnappers while recording her statement in court. But, they say, the court ignored her statement and decided in favour of the other party when it announced its decision two days later.

“We were not allowed to attend the proceedings when the judgment was passed,” said Kumar. “The judge conducted the hearing an hour before the official court timings and he passed the judgment in only half an hour.”

Enraged youngsters from Rinkle’s hometown demanded justice and said that she should be presented before a court again or be sent to a darul aman till a court takes a decision. They said that the chief justice of Pakistan should take suo motu notice in this case.

Another relative, Ravi Kumar, said that videos were uploaded on YouTube in which Haq’s men were seen to be celebrating by firing in the air. He said that the forced conversion of Hindu girls was common in Sindh’s countryside, with around 20 cases being reported every month.


Another supporter, Daya Ram, said that initially the police was not even ready to register an FIR. It was only after a two-hour protest on the Super Highway that the police relented and registered a case.

While parliamentarians from the ruling party did not pay heed to the protest, a Muttahida Qaumi Movement parliamentarian, Munawar Lal, came to show his support to the family. He said that he would walk out of the Sindh Assembly if Rinkle is not returned to her family. “We are tired of picking the bodies of our children, and seeing our women being taken away by criminals,” he declared as people behind him shouted ‘Nai chalay gee, nai chalay gee, ghunda gardhi nai chalay gee.’ It won’t be tolerated, this won’t be tolerated, this hooliganism won’t be tolerated.

“Is this the same Pakistan that Quaid-e-Azam and our people struggled for?” he asked.

Ramesh Kumar, the father of a 28-year-old doctor, Lata Kumari, who was kidnapped last week from DHA’s Phase II, was at the protest. Lata was on her way to the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Pakistan.

The patron of Pakistan Hindu Council, Ramesh Kumar stressed that Hindus were peace-loving people. “But sadly these conversions, kidnappings and extortions every day make our lives miserable.”

Sardar Ramesh Singh pitched in by saying that no religion allowed their followers to convert others by force. “Even Islam does not allow it. Then, how can its followers indulge in such wrongdoing?”

Source : Tribune

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