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Friday, June 9, 2023

Another minor Hindu boy abducted in Pakistan

 A minor Hindu boy was kidnapped from outside his residence by unidentified men in Sindh’s Ranipur town, The Express Tribune reported. According to police and family members, the incident took place on Monday morning when the boy, Aadesh Kumar, was playing with his two neighbourhood friends in front of his house. Two suspects riding a Honda 125 motorcycle appeared in the lane and kidnapped him.

“Initially, the abductors tried to kidnap two children, but one managed to escape, so they fled the scene with Aadesh in front of the area people,” Sawan Raj, maternal uncle of the child, told The Express Tribune.

He said that the local people followed the suspects till Kot Banglow, some 50 km away from the crime scene, but they managed to escape. A man also sustained injuries after the kidnappers allegedly shot at him as he was trying to save Aadesh.

“The nearby people saw the boy screaming from between the two bike riders when they crossed any populated area,” Raj said, adding that soon after the incident, they informed the police. However, he lamented that the law enforcers have only given empty assurances for the child’s recovery.

According to the police, they have checked the CCTV recordings and have started an investigation into the matter. “We have also arrested a few suspects and hope that we will be able to recover the boy and arrest the real criminals,” said Ranipur SHO Ameer Ali Chang.

Hero Mal, Aadesh’s father, who runs a grocery shop in the Shahbaz Colony area of the town said that they belong to the lower middle class and cannot afford to pay ransom to recover his son. “We have not received any call from the kidnappers yet, but such incidents frequently happen with the intention of collecting ransom,” he said, The Express Tribune reported.

After the incident, the Hindu community members and local activists protested in front of the police station by staging a sit-in. The protesters demanded the boy’s recovery and strict security in the area to prevent such incidents from occurring in the future.

“Some time ago, a child belonging to the Hindu community was kidnapped from Babarloi Town of Khairpur Mir on World Children’s Day. He was later sexually assaulted and murdered,” Zameer Solangi, a local activist told the media.

Neither minor boys nor girls are safe in Pakistan and Afghanistan. The abhorrent practice of Bacha Bazi i.e. “boy play”, a centuries-old pedophilic tradition in parts of Afghanistan and Pakistan involves exploiting pre-pubescent boys from the age of 7 to 14 years for sexual pleasure.

It is also common for Pakistani Hindus of all ages to be found hanging in apparent suicides. Desperate poverty and institutionalized neglect by the Pakistani state pushes many Hindus to take this extreme step. But even the ‘suicides’ that occur in suspicious circumstances are not investigated by Pakistani Police due to prejudice against Hindus and to cover up involvement of influential politicians and feudal lords.

(With IANS inputs)

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