|PPP MNA Pir Abdul Haq, lovingly known as Mian Mithoo |
--the face of a thousand nightmares for the religious minorities of Pakistan.
Here I am talking to girls about what twitter would refer to as #firstworldproblems --(often including my own) and then it suddenly hits me-- I'm completely utterly clueless about what real devastation is. Yes I know that pain and suffering are subjective; for some of us the worst pain we will ever know is that of minor surgery or a broken heart from a relationship fall-out, but for us.. that truly does become the worst pain imaginable.
Yet there are people that face our issues and so much more. A kind of suffering that we only see from the outside. Seems like a movie or a scary book..
Does anyone actually care about these people?
As I, and a handful of other bloggers/journalists reported earlier this month, on October 2nd a young girl named Rebecca was kidnapped from her family in Sukkar (Sindh Province), Pakistan. Kidnapping happens all over the world --but here in North America we'd have Amber Alerts going out, authorities in every city and province on high alert and flyers in every gas station and 7-Eleven from here to Nantucket looking for the disgusting freak of a criminal that thought it was OK to take someone's child from them.
Not in Pakistan.
It's October 24th today, and in Hyderabad, Pakistan after 22 days in captivity with GOD KNOWS WHAT happening to this girl, Rebecca has NO JUSTICE.
Her family knows where she is, they know who kidnapped her, they even have clear previous evidence that this has been a RECURRING CRIME within the political religious gangster's establishment that took their daughter from them. Let's not forget that this man (if I can even use that word for him) Member of the National Assembly of Pakistan --member of the ruling Peoples Party Pakistan, one Pir (religious leader) Abdul Haq AKA Mian Mithoo and his gang of mentally disturbed followers have been linked on a continuous bases to other cases like this one --where girls from families of religious minorities are taken from their homes, kept for weeks at the Pir's Haveli (compound), forcibly converted and then married off to his followers and servants.
In fact, one of the more recent and disturbing cases is that of Rinkle Kumari; a young Hindu girl who's story is much like Rebecca's.
Is anyone actually paying attention?
Hindu sources cite that over 300 girls A YEAR are stolen from their homes, and their childhoods into the willing arms of their "husbands" aka in my humble opinion, rapists for life.
I am NOT OK with this.
As a girl, as a HUMAN this has got to be some of the most disturbing garbage I have had to read over my lifetime and yet what's even worse is that no one seems to be listening. It feels like I'm constantly banging my head against the brick wall of North American pacifism. Why Canada? Why America? Because it's not your daughter's being stolen and forced to submit as sexual slaves to the wanton needs of these pathetic excuses for men?
Do I expect you all to pull out your shotguns and book a flight to Pakistan ASAP? No. But there are things you CAN do.
Just pray about it. Not just say you're going to pray and pretend. Talk about it, share what you know with others --and with your Member Parliaments, with your churches, with your neighbours, anyone. And for God's sake stop avoiding the subject. This is more than just about religion --because I know that Islam has become such an untouchable subject for us all; if this was Christians kidnapping Muslim girls I would have condemned it with even harsher terms than I use right now. It's disgusting, it's inhumane, and for these girls: it's their reality. PLEASE don't ignore them.
On October 22nd, Rebecca's was "produced" by her kidnappers before the high court in Sukkar and the "application" submitted by her father against her captors was delivered to her (as news sources have put it) kidnapper husband. The appeals by her family were rejected in near entirety and this girl could not even speak a word in court. Witnesses say her sorrow was visible; "she appeared to have been so frightened and terrorized" but "she did not utter a word".
She came to court accompanied by Mian Aslam, son of Mian Mithoo as well as her "husband" Manzar Dahar. Her family begged the court to allow her to go to Darul Aman (a woman's shelter), but Justice Naamatullah Phulpoto rejected their pleas and sent Rebecca back with her kidnappers and adjourned the hearing to November 2nd.
Dr. Nazir S Bhatti of Pakistan Christian Congress has gone so far as to say of this criminal organization that Pir Mian Mithoo is running that they are kidnapping, converting, forcing the girls into sexual slavery for the Pir and other feudal Lords and then selling these girls to the highest bidders.
You know what we call that in the civilized world folks? HUMAN TRAFFICKING, and it is a crime of serious offense here in Canada. Perhaps it's time we take it just as seriously when it's happening to the Hindu and Christian girls in Pakistan.
By the way, if you want to know how half of Pakistan sees it, there are quite a few sources around that claim that it's Mian Mithoo who's the victim here --this article actually states that there is no such thing as forced conversion; funny because Christian pastors are constantly accused arrested and even killed for just that.