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Tag Archives: abduction

Asif Masih and Khadim Masih still missing


The story of two Christian brothers, who went missing on 14th September, was not the first incident of abduction. Many would ask this question that why their religious affiliation needs to be mentioned. The answer is simple. Small groups with little social presence are more vulnerable and find less representation. Their issues when merged on the big canvas loose their true colours and identity in countries likePakistan. Hundreds of cases of abductions are registered every day with police and the weaker sections of the society which grow up in the complex web of caste, creed, and status, find themselves powerless to approach the institutions to seek justice.

If are a Christian and that, too, poor who works on Muslim’s land expose you to more threats, humiliation, discrimination and torture as it has been stated by newspapers millions of times. Knowing the fact that Muslims rule in this country, little or no attention is paid to the issues of minorities. In this case who will hold the inquiry when the alleged culprit is from the police department?

Faisalabad(AsiaNews) – Nothing is known of two Christian brothers from Faisalabad(Punjab) who were seized by the Muslim landowning family that employed them. The two disappeared on 14 September. Since then, “We have no idea where they are, whether they are dead or alive,” their mother told AsiaNews. A money dispute between the two Christian farm workers and their Muslim landlords is at the root of their abduction. Police have not yet opened a First Information Report because one of the landlords is a police officer.

Asif Masih, 23, known as Kali, and Khadim Masih, 35, come from a poor Christian family living in Chak 71, Jaranwala District, Faisalabad. They worked for 2,500 Pakistani rupees (US$ 29) a month for three Muslim landowners, policeman Javed Dogar and his brothers Sajjad Dogar and Rauf Dogar, who hail from Khurrianwala.

The mother of the two Christian brothers, Basheeran Bibi, said her sons had borrowed 20,000 rupees from the landowners, and were paying the loan back every month, out of their salary.

However, working for the Dogars was getting harder and harder. Although Muslims, they were often drunk and brutally beat the two Christians for no apparent reason.

When they found out, the parents of the Masih brothers suggested they pay off the debt and quit. This sparked an angry reaction from the Dogars who stormed the Masih home where they roughed up Niamat, the brothers’ father, who has a heart ailment. After that, they abducted the two brothers in September asking for a ransom of 70,000 rupees, plus the remainder of the debt.

The men’s mother tried to file a report with police, which refused because one of the suspects is a fellow police officer.

“Disputes between landowners and tenant farmers are commonplace in the area,” Fr Augustine, a priest in Faisalabad who provides financial and moral help to families, told AsiaNews. A serious and impartial inquiry should be conducted into the affair. “Farm workers are poor,” he explained. “They don’t have money to pay for legal action against landowners.”

 
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Posted by on October 29, 2011 in Christians

 

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Right to vote, by choice or by force?


The right to vote is all we have with little hope for the democratic system to work. Democracy is relatively new and fragile every time it seizes a chance to have a comeback. But it brings huge disappointment when elected representatives take undemocratic steps to exhibit their power and authority unlawfully. It is the story of a legislator from one of the main politic parties who kidnapped and tortured a Christian woman on an excuse that Christians did not vote for him. In front of an influential legislator, the police appeared helpless and hesitated in exercising its authority. On a principal stand, it is obligatory for all political parties to have a system of accountability for its members who come into power to serve. Rather to prove a real opposition, PML-N needs to bring some drastic changes in its policy and the biggest step it needs to take is to make its representatives answerable for what they do.  No one has a right and power to force voters to vote in his/her favour and subsequently no revenge is justified in case of undesirable outcome.

RAWALPINDI, PAKISTAN (BosNewsLife)– A Christian woman remained in hospital Monday, June 28, after she was beaten and briefly abducted on the orders of a prominent Pakistani Muslim legislator “because Christians didn’t vote” for him, family and police said.

Komal John, 38, was attacked June 5, by armed men at her home in the city of Rawalpindi, according to witnesses. They arrived in a car of parliamentarian Shakeel Awan of the influential Pakistan Muslim League (Nawaz) party, John’s family said. “Some six armed men came assaulted us and took my wife,” John’s husband and daughter added in a statement. Witnesses said Komal John was beaten before being pushed in the land cruiser vehicle.

The kidnapping reportedly came shortly after Awan fired John as his assistant on June 2 when discovering that a cousin had given the Christian woman money while visiting her when she was ill.

Awan objected to any support for John because “Christians didn’t vote for him” during a recent election in his district, according to Christians familiar with the case.

POLICE RELUCTANT

Local police was initially reluctant to intervene and denied a family request to launch a criminal investigation against Awan, local Christians said.

Awan allegedly had asked police to throw John’s relatives “out of the police station” and warned that “if they will try to file a complaint they will not see Komal again.”

The family contacted Christian advocacy groups, including the Christian Progressive Movement (CPM) and Ephlal Ministry, who said they gathered hundreds of activists outside the police station, blocking roads and shouting slogans to demand Komal’s release.

“Yes Shakeel Awan is a legislator, but that doesn’t mean he can go around and do anything he wants,” CPM Director Nayla J. Dayal told BosNewsLife. “He should be sacked immediately for this inhuman act”.

“UNDERSTANDING PAIN”

A senior police official told the crowd to remain calm. “I understand your pain, I will try my best to recover the lady,” said Rawalpindi District Coordination Officer Chaudhry Aslam Nawaz.

Amid mounting pressure, police reportedly contacted Awan saying that “it would be wise to release the woman”.  She was released around 3am local time June 16, when Awan’s car dropped her at the police station. The woman required hospitalization. No more details were given about her injuries, but investigators ruled out sexual abuse.

No criminal investigation has been launched against the legislator, BosNewsLife established. Awan refused to comment.

 
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Posted by on June 28, 2010 in Christians

 

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