Protest against forced conversion, police apathy – 07 Mar 2023

Hindu community members say cases higher than reported

Scores of families belonging to the Hindu community staged a protest in Mirpurkhas on Monday against forced conversion of Hindu girls.

They raised slogans against the kidnapping of teenage girls in various parts of the province.

The protestors demanded the government to pass strict laws against the forced conversions, saying they also needed representation in the assemblies.

The organisers, primarily activists affiliated with the Pakistan Darawer Itehad (PDI), said the demonstrations would be held in different cities, including Karachi, on March 30.

“Over 1,000 Hindu women are being abducted, converted and married to Muslim men annually,” claimed PDI Chairman Faqir Shiva Kuchhi.

Quoting the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan data, he said that the number of such cases was higher than reported in the media.

“Unfortunately, 80 per cent of these girls are minors,” he pointed out. Speaking to The Express Tribune, Kuchhi said that police did not cooperate with Hindu families.

“We have to either stage a protest or file an appeal in a court for the registration of FIRs against abductions,” he said.

“Our people feel unsafe. They do not trust the police,” Kuchhi said, adding over 5,000 people will march towards the Sindh Assembly on March 30.

Most conversions have been reported in lower parts of Sindh, including the Hyderabad and Mirpurkhas divisions. The activists claim that the indifferent attitude of the law enforcement agencies supports kidnappers to harass Hindu women freely.

“Even married women are being kidnapped and converted,” Kuchhi said

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