INTERVIEW #1: CHANDERVATI BHAGRI
Chandervati and her relatives are hiding in Karachi because her kidnapper has threatened to kill them.
She comes from the district of Ghotki in northern Sindh, about 536 km by road from Karachi.
Sometime during September, 2014, four Muslim men broke into her home at Ghotki. One of the men placed a gun on her daughter (girl seen on Chandervati's lap in video), threatening to kill the child if Chandervati did not go with them.
For sake of daughter's safety, she went with the men. The main kidnapper's name is IMRAN BHATTI.
She was taken to a place called Ranipur and held captive for one-and-a-half months.
She says her kidnapper(s) were pressurizing her to convert to Islam and she refused.
Chandervati says they kidnapped her with intent to use her for prostitution. SHE SAYS SHE WAS RAPED during captivity.
Hindu girls are often kidnapped by pimps and turned over to brothels, though not all abductions are motivated by prostitution [ View Article by Faiza Ilyas at leading local newspaper Dawn, published 20 March 2015, titled, "265 cases of forced conversion reported last year, moot told" ]
Her family lodged a police report known as "FIR" in Pakistan (writer did not ask for date). In retaliation, kidnapper Imran counter-lodged an FIR on her family, accusing them of trying to "kidnap" Chandervati, who he now claimed was his wife. Imran had managed to show the court a fake marriage certificate.
The relatives have, as a result, been charged with "attempted kidnapping" and are awaiting trial. They were, at time of interview, on bail.
Chandervati's family had hired a Muslim lawyer to extricate them out of this hell. However, they claimed the lawyer has misled them. This is, in their view, substantially because the lawyer's sympathy is with his co-religionist Imran
We will observe in the other interviews as well that the courts and police in Pakistan are instinctively inclined to sympathize or support Muslim elements, even if the prima facie evidence shows that it is the Muslim element alone that caused harm to the non-Muslim victim.
The court has chosen to so far believe the kidnapper despite Chandervati clearly articulating to the judge that she was already married to a Hindu man name Narayan, that she had been kidnapped by Imran, and that she had been continually raped.
Chandervati comes from the Bhagri caste of the Sindhi Hindu community. The Bhagris are mainly labourers, which means they are poor. The majority are also illiterate.
Their poverty was also a reason why they were misled by their lawyer. Their poverty means they could only hire a low-priced lawyer, which implies poor quality. Second, because they are illiterate, they can be easily misguided, which happened in this instance. Their lawyer had filed an application for divorce from Imran, which implies she had been married to him. This has thus complicated their situation and is probably one reason why the court had assumed the marriage certificate Imran produced is "genuine".
Chandervati continues to explain she has faced many instances of discrimination as a Hindu in an Islamic state.
Her uncle Gul is seen later in the video saying that he too has faced hatred and hostility since childhood.
Note her final words in the video: "There is no future for us in Pakistan. We will either be converted or killed."
The family (seen in video) is living at an undisclosed location in Karachi, Pakistan's main commercial hub, located in southwest Sindh. They are scared to even reveal their identity as Hindus to their Muslim neighbours.
Chandervati's husband is still in Ghotki, with one daughter.
Click here to Continue > Interview #2
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