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Is this the ‘Naya Pakistan’? Mr Imran Khan, stop lecturing India and stop abduction and forceful conversion of Hindu girls in your country

The story of teenage Hindu girls being kidnapped in Pakistan, converted to Islam, getting married to Muslims and turning up in courts after a few weeks and accepting the new religion have been making the rounds for many years now.

In a very recent case a Sikh girl named Jagjit Kaur has allegedly been abducted and forcefully converted to Islam on a gunpoint in Pakistan’s Nankana Sahib city. The incident took place on 27th of August. The 19-year-old girl is daughter of Bhagwan Singh, a ‘granthi’ (priest) of Gurudwara Tambu Sahib.

The girl’s family has also appealed to Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan to protect the family and has demanded girls safe return.

a video emerged in which Jagjit Kaur was seen claiming that she had ‘converted’ to Islam. The family of the girl begged Imran Khan for justice, stating that they will self-immolate if the girl was not returned.

While this gross violation of human rights has been going on for some time, in March this issue gained international media attention. two girls, 13-year-old Raveena and 15-year-old Reena, were allegedly kidnapped by a group of ‘influential’ men, from their home in Ghotki district, Sindh, on the eve of Holi.

video of the father of the two girls, sitting outside a police station, hitting himself in desperation, crying out for his daughters to be released. In a desperate bid, the man was seen saying that either his daughters be returned to him or he be shot dead.

the abduction of  these Hindu teenage girls had led to a war of tweets between the then external affairs minister Late. Sushma Swaraj ji and Pakistan’s then federal minister for information and broadcasting Chaudhary Fawad Hussain.

Mr. Fawad Hussain tried to lecture Sushmaji on how to treat minorities but instead got a befitting reply by her.

In the run-up to the July 2018 Pakistan elections, Pakistan TehreekeInsaf (PTI) — Imran Khan’s political party — promised to stop the forcible conversion of Hindu girls to Islam.

In February, Imran Khan was, ironically enough, giving lectures on how India should treat its minority communities, even as Hindu minorities in his own country were crying for help. Khan said: “We will ensure minorities in Pakistan are treated as equal citizens with all rights and privileges — unlike how the Muslims are being treated in India as second-class citizens.”

Is this your way of treating minorities Mr. Khan?are you turning an blind eye to the issue purposefully or you are not even aware of these promises you made anymore?

Mr. Imran Khan is busy planning outrageously silly protest against India. That too for a matter that is of no concern to his country. He has been running to get media attentions and Mr. Imran Khan has all the time in the world to stage protest against Abolishment of Article 370, and poke his nose in India’s internal matters, but doesn’t not have time to look into plight of Hindu minorities in his country.

these incidents of kidnappings and forced marriages raised a debate in international media and went up to the Pakistan Supreme Court in recent times.

Because of threat to their life and their family’s, girls comply and accept their forceful marriage and conversion. The judges in the court too act as rubber stamp and the girls are often ordered to go with their husband.

according to Hindu community members who have attended such hearings. Often the young Muslim man is accompanied by backers armed with rifles. Few members of the girl’s family are allowed to appear, and the victim, seeing no way out, signs papers affirming her conversion and marriage.

There are around 2.5 million Hindus in Pakistan. Of them, 94% live in the Sindh province, mostly in the northern districts bordering India.

Pakistani human rights activists report as many as 25 cases of kidnappings, forced conversion and weddings of teenage Hindu girls every month.

When Christians are targeted in Pakistan, the western countries and many Christian organisations, starting from the Vatican, bring pressure upon the Pakistani government to mend its ways. In the case of Shias, there are various Shia parties and organisations which are willing to stand up for their cause. But who speaks for the Hindus in Pakistan? Even Nepal is no longer a Hindu Republic. Only India can take up this matter.

Pakistan doesn’t even have a statutory National Human Rights Commission, it no longer has a Federal minister for minorities since Shahbaz Bhatti’s brutal murder and the Supreme Court has not given Hindus any confidence with its actions in the recent case.

In 1951, Pakistan had 15% Hindus — by 1998, that population had shrunk to 1.6%

In his own country, Hindus are struggling to be recognised as human beings though.

Why doesn’t Imran Khan divert his attention from lecturing us in India to looking at the dismal situation in his own country?

Mr. Imran Khan, every Friday please stand up from 12:00 – 12:30 PM, instead of worrying about Kashmir which is an integral part of India, better take look at the minorities in your country. Instead of lecturing India, try diverting your attentions on real problems of your country.

Dr Sindhu Prashanth

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