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February 5, 2013

PAKISTAN: 6 YEARS OLD MINORITY GIRL’S RAPE CASE COVERED UP
BY ABBAS KASSAR
HYDERABAD, January 24,2013:: A 6-year-old Hindu girl Wijenti Meghwar, student of class-1 who was raped in Ghulam Nabi Shah town of Sindh province in Pakistan on December 02,2012 while playing in street and who was admitted in critical condition first in Mirpurkhas civil hospital then shifted to Karachi Lyari hospital was has been discharged on 6 January 2013.after lying on death bed for more than a month with little or no care by doctors. She has not as yet fully recovered. Her faher More and uncle Iserdas, belging to Hindu minority community of Pakistan took her first to district headquarter hospital in Umerkot but as there was no doctor present at night time they rushed her to Mirpurkhas civil hospital. MuIrpurkhas is a metropolitican city and on 76 kilometers from her village. The victim got admission at the hospital on intervention of ruling peoples party minister Mardan Ali Shah as the doctors at Mirpurkhas civil hospital had refused to admit her and had asked for police letter from Ghulam Nabi Shah police station of Umerkot district.The parents alleged that doctors there were indifferent to treatment of their girl so they took her to Lyari hospital in Karachi after a week. The citizens of Ghulam Nabi Shah town immediately closed down their shops to mark protest against the gory incident that had bowed down head of humanity in shame . Minority member of Sindh Assembly Khatoomat Jeevan, Jeay Sindh Mahaz ( a political party which is striving for freedom of Sindh from Pakistan) leaders Abdul Wahid Ariser, Mir Alam Mari and others condemned the incident and demanded arrest of culprit. Umerkot distirct police in the beginning arrested one young man Naval Meghwar belonging to victim family and two others but the father and uncle of girl accused police of trying tactics to cool down the matter. The police is avoding to arrest the alleged culprit by caste a Mangrio nominated in the case as he is said to be son of a politically influenced landlord of the area.
It was ironic that the concerned police had not registered the case for three days and instead of arresting the culprit involved in heinous crime of raping an infant child; had arrested a man whom father of girl describes as not related to the crime.

The parents of the girl told that the footprints of accused led to an Otaq ( guest house) of a powerful local landlord as well as stiffer dogs also identified that spot, yet to mess up the matter and to save the landlord; police instead later arrested one Rano Mallah to mess up the issue. The incident had sent a wave of terror and fright among minorities whose girls had given up to go to schools or even out of their homes. Ms. Zarina Mallah mother of arrested Rano Mallah had expressed suspicion that his son was innocent and accused police that it might kill her son in fake encounter.( killing the innocent people in fake encounter by police and state agencies and then throwing their dead bodies outside their villages(homes) is common in Pakistan). She said footprint number of original accused is of 9 while that of her son Rano is 7 number. She fears extra judicial killing of her son.
It may be recalled that the lives of minorities in Pakistan including Hindus, Christians and Sikhs and others have been made miserable and Pakistan has turned difficult for minorities to live. Thousands of Hindus have migrated to India which they consider safer than Pakistan. The rape and abduction of Hindu girls is common in Pakistan especially in Sindh where the rulers have shut their eyes to such crimes against humanity. Leader of Hindu Panchayet Kishan Chand Parwani member of parliament has said that no month passes when more than 20 Hindu girls are not kidnapped,raped and then forcibly converted.He said 50,000 more Hindus from Mirpurkhas division alone were ready to migrate to India as Pakistan has now turned ” land of bigots”.
6 years old girl Vijenti Meghwar is weak because of fact that she belongs to minority Hindu community and in this community again to a peasant family of Meghwar, Bheel and Kolhi that are considered and treated in Pakistan as Dalits ( untouchables). They work on farmlands of Muslim landlords and are taken forced or bonded labour since generations. Viginti could not get justice due to another factor of crumbling society where law and order has remained worst especially in Sindh.
In another development , a brother of landlord accused in the rape case, had injured the journalist Mushtaq Kumbar in a murderous attack on him in Ghulam Nabi Shah town.The journalist was reporting the follow up of Vijenti rape case. He also threatened another journalist Arbab Bheel of murder if he continued to report the facts of case. Police and administration have not taken notice of the attack on journalist and threat to another as police itself seems frightened of sons of said landlord. The system in Pakistan is such that allows kidnapping, rape and killing of girls. The accused roam here freely while the victim is left to die because of inefficient police officers who are recruited on political basis.
The chief minister Sindh Syed Qaim Ali Shah was in Mirpurkhas city when Vijenti was still lying on death bed of civil hospital in this city but he did not bother to visit her. This is the climax of discrimination against minority girls as in contrast to this Pakistan President Asif Ali Zardari visited hospital in UK where another Pakistan girl Malala was under treatment on state expenses of Pakistan. She was injured in an attack on a school in northern province of Pakistan Khyber Pukhtoonkhwa. President also donated dollar 10 million for Malala out of govt funds but for Vijenti not a single dollar has been announced nor treatment on state expenses. Communist Party of Pakistan secretary Imdad Kazi has condemned incident of rape with a Hindu girl Vijenti and has observed that minorities in Pakistan are treated worse than animals. The relatives of rape victim girl Vijenti who were staying at Karachi to look after treatment of their daughter have said they were given threats of death to withdraw from the case or they all will be killed and in view of these threats they will not go back to their town Ghulam Nabi Shah until the real culprit nominated by them in case is not arrested.
ends
ABBAS KASSAR
A journalist and HR activist in Hyderabad city of Pakistan
contact 92 3453585137 Reporter of daily Messenger Karachi and Lahore Times Lahore

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