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KARACHI: Preetam Das is a good doctor with a hospital job and a thriving private clinic, yet all he thinks about is leaving Pakistan, terrified about a rise in killings and kidnappings targeting Hindus.
A successful professional, he lives in mega city Karachi with his wife and two children, but comes from Kashmore, a district in the north of Pakistan’s southern province of Sindh.
His family has lived there for centuries and in 1947 when the sub-continent split between India, a majority Hindu state, and Pakistan, a homeland for Muslims, Das’ grandparents chose to stay with the Muslims.
They fervently believed the promise of Pakistan’s founder Muhammad Ali Jinnah that religious minorities would be protected. Sixty years later, their grandson says life in Kashmore has become unbearable. “The situation is getting worse every day,” he says.
Two of his uncles have been kidnapped and affluent Hindus are at particular risk from abduction gangs looking for ransom, he says.
Rights activists say the climate is indicative of progressive Islamisation over the last 30 years that has fuelled an increasing lack of tolerance to religious minorities, too often considered second class citizens.
Das says the only thing keeping him in Pakistan is his mother. “She has flatly refused to migrate, which hinders my plans. I can’t go without her,” he said.
Hindus make up 2.5 per cent of the 174 million people living in the nuclear-armed Muslim nation. Over 90 per cent live in Sindh, where they are generally wealthy and enterprising, making them easy prey for criminal gangs.
An official at the ministry of external affairs in New Delhi who declined to be named said: “Every month about eight to 10 Hindu families migrate from Pakistan. Most of them are well-off.”
He had no comment on whether the number was on the rise, but Hindu community groups in Pakistan say more people are leaving because of kidnappings, killings and even forced conversions of girls to Islam.
“Two of my brothers have migrated to India and an uncle to the UAE,” said Jay Ram, a farmer in Sindh’s northern district of Ghotki.
“It’s becoming too difficult to live here. Sindhis are the most tolerant community in the country vis-a-vis religious harmony, but deteriorating law and order is forcing them to move unwillingly,” he added.
Rinkal Kumari, a Hindu Girl, from Mirpur Mathelo Sindh Pakistan, was kidnapped on 23rd February 2012 while she was returning home from her college. After being kidnapped, she was taken to Bharchundi Shareef (a small village near Mirpur Mathelo, Sindh, Pakistan) and was put under the custody of Feudal named Mian Mithoo (Member of Assembly). The victim, Rinkal, was harrowed by Mian Mithoo to forcefully convert to Islam and then get married with Naveed Shah, a resident of the same area. Under defenseless circumstances along with physical abuse, Rinkal married Naveed Shah. Disturbed and agonized by the situation, Mr. Raj Kumar (Rinkal’s Uncle) and Rinkal’s family approached the local law enforcement to seek justice but to no avail. The Policemen, negatively influenced by Mian Mithoo, denied the rights of Rinkal’s family to lodge a complaint.After 5 hours of struggle, pleading and literal beseech, the Police finally accepted a written complaint from Rinkal’s family and issued a First Information Report (F.I.R) saying that the case will be presented at 10 am 24th February 2012 in Ghotki Local Court.
Plan Changed and the victim was taken to a different court in Mirpur Mathelo and hearing was rescheduled to 9:00am from 10:00am. These location and time changes were influenced by Mian Mithoo and Rinkal family were not informed about this change. However, knowing this information from an unknown source, Rinkal’s family reached that place early but they were blocked from entering the court premises by private gunmen (hired by Mian Mithoo) with heavy artillery as seen in the pictures and video clips on different Tv channels. In the video clip below Ayaz Latif Palijo Protesting against forced Religion conversion The language of the Bolta Pakistan program is urdu (Hindi).
By Dr Ali Akbar Dhakan, Sindh
On 1st Aug 2010, my friend and his younger brother a USA California citizen visited Bhambhore for sight seeing and knowing the culture and civilization of old Sindh prevalent before the conquer by the army under the Arab conqueror Muhammad Bin Qasim in 712 AC.We first purchased three Tickets or entry slips for Rs 10 each and then met the In charge Deputy Director of this project. He was nice man who provided and guided us well and then asked his two staff members to help and provide us full guidance and knowledge on the whole site of the Bhanbhore area.The site is situated on the northern Bank of the Gharo about 60 Kms east of Karachi on the Indus highway to Thatto.In March 1958, the site was excavated and continued yearly for about four months each winter for a number of years till a complete picture of the site of the ancient settlement revealed in 1965.The site conceals the remains of a settlement of considerable size. It is divided into two parts viz a well-fortified citadel area measuring over 2000 feet from east to west and 1200 feet from north to south and another unwalled city extending over a large area on the north and east round an ancient lake including an industrial area and an ancient graveyard on its outskirts. It is on the mouth of old channel of mighty Indus, the site is ideally situated to have been an inland port of some importance. Some archaeological Scholars and historians have suggested its identification with DEBAL, the famous port which fell to the Arab worrior providing it after success of Muslim army as the gate way to Islam for the whole Pakistan and India sub-continent and then spread towards all the eastern and far eastern countries. We were astonished to observe that no attention has been given by the Governments of Pakistan and Sindh to convert this area as sight seeing and make it an abode and frequent visits of foreigners so that by their visits, our country and Sindh Government earn a huge amount of foreign exchange and other services.Their is need of new residential and industrial areas for increasing the employment of local unemployed people. Secondly, a good number of hotels and restaurants may be built up so that visitors can get lodging and boarding facilities etc.
London, 5 March 2012 – According to the press Release issued by Samad Baloch, General Secretary, Baloch Human Rights Council (UK); A Baloch solidarity protest rally was held in front of US embassy in London on Sunday 4 March 2012. Rally was organised by Baloch Human Rights Council (UK), Balochistan Raaji Zrombesh, Balochistan Libration Organisation and World Sindhi Congress. A large number of the Baloch and Sindhis despite of cold and severe rainy weather attended the rally.
Rally was organized to express gratefulness of the Baloch to congressional representatives Dana Rohrabacher, Louie Gohmert and Steve king and the US government for their support for human rights of the Baloch and the right of self-determination of Balochistan ie Free Balochistan. Speakers requested the congressional representatives to continue their efforts in this respect in order to save the Baloch from the brutalities of Iran and Pakistan. They requested the US government to support the bill asking for the right of self-determination of the Baloch including free sovereign Balochistan.
Participants of the rally expressed their solidarity with the Baloch and Sindhi national struggles. They condemned the state crimes against humanity being committed against the Baloch and Sindhi people.
Speakers condemned disappearances, torture and extra-judicial killings of innocent Baloch and Sindhi people by Pakistani security agencies. They termed this as a systematic genocide of Baloch nation. They requested the international community, the USA and the UK to intervene in Balochistan. They urged UN to put stringent sanctions on Pakistan … and pressurize these governments to end heinous crimes against Baloch and Sindhi people.
Rahim Bandovi, Mir Ghulam Hussain (Mir of UK), Mustafa Baloch, Faiz Baloch, Hassan Hamdam, Abdullah Baloch, Mir Ometan Baloch and Samad Baloch were among those who spoke on the occasion.
By Qazi Asif
Hindu protesters demand justice for 17-year-old girl, who they believe was forcefully converted to Islam, Blame PPP MNA Mian Abdul Haq alias Mian Mitho for her ‘abduction’
KARACHI – A sizable crowd of Hindu protesters gathered outside the Karachi Press Club on Sunday, demanding justice for a 17-year-old Hindu girl from Mirpur Mathelo in Ghotki district, Rinkle Kumari, who was allegedly abducted forcefully converted to Islam and renamed Faryal.
The relatives of the girl, who were among the protesters, blame one man for her alleged predicament – Pakistan People’s Party MNA Mian Abdul Haq alias Mian Mitho, who is also the spiritual leader of Bharchundi Sharif in Daharki.
The girl’s relatives claimed that the girl fell in love with her neighbour Naveed Shah, whose friend Hussam Kalwar is a supporter of the MNA.
Kalwar, a criminal, has been arrested several times but always manages to get released due to his ties to the influential MNA.
Giving details about the night when Kumari was “abducted”, her uncle, Daya Ram, said in the early hours of February 24 this year, Kumari was supposed to meet Naveed Shah, believing that he would be alone. But Shah was not alone and accompanied by armed men, who abducted her and took her to Bharchundi Sharif, where she was forcefully converted to Islam.
“She did not leave home out of free will. If she had, why was one of her shoes at the home’s entrance and her dupatta outside? She was kidnapped by armed men, who barged into the home,” Ram told Pakistan Today.
He further said on the morning of February 24, he reached the Mirpur Mathelo police station and had an FIR registered against Naveed Shah.
On the same day at 1 pm, Kumari’s family received a phone call from MNA Haq’s son Mian Aslam Shah, who told them that if they wish to meet the girl, they should come to his residence.
However, Ram claimed, the family told him that they do not wish to meet her at his residence and would instead want her brought to the DSP’s office or the Hindu Panchayat Hall, where she can talk with them freely. However, both these options were rejected.
Ram said the next day, Kumari’s family was told that they can meet the girl at the Ghotki DSP’s office, but they would have to come along with Jeay Sindh Mahaz Chairman Riaz Chandio.
When Chandio and the girl’s family entered the office of the DSP, they saw that Mian Shaman, the brother of the PPP MNA, was seated on the chair of the DSP. The family again refused to talk with the girl in Shaman’s presence and was again given an option that they can meet her in the presence of Naveed Shah. The family did not accept the offer and went to the Ghotki civil judge.
The first time Kumari met her family after the “abduction” was in the court. She told her family in the presence of counsels from both sides that she was kidnapped. “Some people entered our home and kidnapped me. I did not want to leave with Naveed Shah,” Kumari’s uncle quoted her as saying.
At that moment, Ram said, Naveed Shah fainted and the judge, instead of letting the recording of her statement complete, remanded Kumari to police custody for two days.
“At the Sukkur police station, a policewoman handed her a cell phone on which she was threatened that if she did not change her statement, she and her relatives will be killed and the property of all Hindus in the area will be demolished,” Ram claimed.
“When Rinkle was brought to the court again, she was confused and upset and asked us to forgive her and allow her to sacrifice herself for our sake,” he added.
He said on February 26, President Asif Ali Zardari took notice of the incident and police again “kidnapped” Kumari and at 2 pm, she was shifted to Mirpur Mathelo from Sukkur.
On February 27, the day when Kumari had to appear in the court again, all routes to the court were blocked, but not for the “fanatic” followers of the MNA.
“If Rinkle was acting out of her own will, then why was she surrounded by armed men at the court?” Daya Rama questioned.
During the second hearing, Kumari gave a statement in favour of Naveed Shah and the court ordered her to be given into his custody.
In response to the family’s allegations, MNA Haq’s son Mian Aslam Shah has claimed that the couple had come to him seeking help and the girl wanted to convert to Islam so she could marry Shah.
MPA Petamber Sehwani, during the Sindh Assembly session on February 29, said Hindus’ daughters are being kidnapped and boys killed. “They are being forced to leave Sindh. But I want to make it clear that the Hindus of Sindh will not leave their motherland. Do not push us to the wall,” he said.
The pirs or spiritual leaders of Bharchundi Sharif have a history of religious extremism. On November 2, 1939, a famous Hindu Sufi singer Bhagat Kanwar Ram was killed in a train while travelling to Sukkur. The FIR of the murder was registered against MNA Haq’s father, Mian Abdul Rahim and his two followers.
Courtesy: Pakistan Toady
Courtesy: Geo Tv » YouTube