Two Hindu girls petition IHC for protection
The brother of two Hindu girls, who their family claims were forcibly converted and married to Muslim men, petitioned the Lahore High Court’s Bahawalpur division bench for the recovery of his sisters.
Shaman Daas submitted the B-forms of the Ghotki girls to the court. Daas said his sisters –Raveena and Reena—are underage as they are aged 13 and 15 years.
“If Nikkah is permissible at this age under the Pakistani law, my family will accept the Nikkah of the two girls,” Shaman said.
The B-form shows Raveena was born in 2004 and Reena in 2006. Shaman Daas reached Bahawalpur along with his lawyers. “We came to Bahawalpur as we were told that the girls will be produced before the court in Bahawalpur,” he said. But, they haven’t been produced so far, he said.
My sisters were abducted on March 20 when the Holi festival was being celebrated, he said. It has been seven days that we haven’t been able to meet them and Sindh police are not cooperating with us, he said.
The girls are not being produced for their statement under section 164, said Mukesh Kumar, Daas’s counsel. “We don’t know if the girls are alive or dead,” another counsel, Amanullah Ashir, said. “It has been seven days now since they were abducted from the house at gunpoint.”
Ashir said the local MPA, MNA and SPs were offering protection to the accused. Daas has filed a writ petition at the Sindh High Court under Article 199 of the Constitution, read with sections 491 of the Criminal Procedure Code for the recovery and production of the girls.
The girls were forcibly converted to Islam, said the counsel. The court will hear the petition tomorrow [March 26], Ashir said.
The counsel said we are not satisfied with what federal information minister Fawad Chaudhry has said. “The minorities enjoy more security in Pakistan in comparison to that in India,” Ashir added. “But, our matter should be resolved.”
The girls appeared before the Islamabad High Court within an hour after their brother filed his application for their recovery and production. The two girls pleaded with the court for protection.
The girls said they accepted Islam of their own free will and no one forced them to. “The continuous propaganda on the media has posed a serious threat to the lives of our husbands,” they said in their plea and requested the court order relevant authorities to provide them security.
Meanwhile, the Senate’s standing committee on interior also sought a report on the issue from the interior ministry and the Sindh government within a week.
“Such behavior with the girls of the minorities is wholly unacceptable and deplorable,” the chairperson of the committee said. “We will get justice to the affected parents at all costs,” he said.