Lesson learned: Cleric breaks 7-year-old’s leg for forgetting verse

Published: August 20, 2011

" The students said he was hitting my son because he had forgotten verses while fasting. Latif was torturing him, period," Father Mumtaz.

VEHARI: 

A cleric tortured a seven-year-old student for not memorising his lessons properly.

According to residents of Vehari’s Ghara Mor village, a local prayer leader tortured a seven-year-old student for forgetting the words to a surah.

Busti Sheikhan Wali resident Muhammad Mumtaz’s son Muhammad Adnan, 7, was memorising the Quran at a mosque. On Friday, several of Adnan’s class mates said that he kept forgetting one verse of a surah and cleric Muhammad Latif beat him with a stick. “He then hung the boy upside down from a tree and beat him while screaming at him to recite the verses properly,” said Mansoor Shah, who was also present at the mosque.

“We protested to have the child freed but by the time he was taken to a hospital he had fainted from the pain,” he added.

Adnan’s father was informed of the incident and came to the Vehari DHQ hospital, where doctors told him that Adnan’s leg was broken. “The boy has suffered severe bruises and some internal injuries. His left leg has been broken and we cannot re-set the bones,” said Dr Altaf Momin.

Students at the seminary said that Latif had begun kicking Adnan and when he begged for water after being hung by the tree, he was refused. “He was hanging from the tree for over an hour. Every few minutes Latif asked him to recite the verses and when he got them wrong he was beaten,” said a student. “He kept asking for water but he was refused. Later he fainted and some men helped him down and took him to a hospital,” he told Adnan’s father.

“He beat my son to a pulp and I expected this man to teach my son about Islam!” Muhammad Mumtaz said. “The students said he was hitting my son because he had forgotten verses even while he was fasting. Latif was torturing him, what of that?” Mumtaz told reporters.

Mumtaz approached police officials to file a case on his son’s behalf. “We have sought a medical report regarding the boy’s condition. If torture is proven we will arrest Latif,” said a Vehari police official.

“How can the police not register a case? My son’s leg is broken, what more proof do they need,” Mumtaz told reporters.

“We have already issued a medical certificate but the police do not want to arrest Latif. They took him in for questioning but released him after an hour,” said Dr Momin.

“We arrested Latif for questioning but he said he had only hit the boy a couple of times.

He said that this was the only way the children would learn but that he had not broken Adnan’s leg,” the police official said.

“We have released him until further evidence,” he added.

Published in The Express Tribune, August 20th, 2011.

Reader Comments (27)

  • Javed
    Aug 20, 2011 - 11:37AM

    Waiting for your dharna in Vehari against this cruelty Mr. Imran Khan! Stop the drone attacks would be your reply.

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  • Mohd.
    Aug 20, 2011 - 12:54PM

    Religion of Peace(TM) indeed!

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  • Kashif Channa
    Aug 20, 2011 - 2:08PM

    This is really painful story. How can a Muslim and a preacher of Holy Islam be so cruel at times when dealing with innocent children’s?
    I must say that parents should teach their children themselves and try to keep away from the cruel moulvi’s.

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  • Hasan
    Aug 20, 2011 - 3:09PM

    I have never understood this bizarre compulsion to memorize the Quran. How about these young students memorize their non-religious studies – I assume they are being taught such studies! Perhaps a greater focus on education rather than religion would assist Pakistan in getting out of the economic and social mess that we now see ourselves in.

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  • Slider
    Aug 20, 2011 - 3:17PM

    Another example of moulvis who commit crimes in the name of Islam. Sad times wi live in. I say we hang him…!!Recommend

  • saleem islam
    Aug 20, 2011 - 3:18PM

    How can we call this man A Preacher????Recommend

  • Rashid
    Aug 20, 2011 - 3:27PM

    I think culture has to do everything with this, and obviously, a person’s own caliber and wishes. If you cannot make a child memorize The Holy Qur’an, without beating him/her, then, retract your services. Anyways, according to Shari’ah, it is Haraam to hit on a person’s face, or head. Even a father cannot do this to the child; one may pat heavily on the back. Using sticks, hanging upside down, slapping on the face, all this is strictly forbidden. And the one who did it has to ask for forgiveness from the victim. If a teacher did it to a small child, he has to ask for forgiveness of his/her parents, otherwise, he has breached Huqooq ul ‘Ibaad.

    Actually, this may show a person’s own weakness, and their psychological inferiority complex. Plus, it is far better if you try to communicate with a child in an effective manner, and try to advice them. Strictness has many forms, and in my view, perhaps, the most weak is physical.

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  • Cautious
    Aug 20, 2011 - 3:42PM

    If that so called “holy man” beat my kid I would beat him and hang what was left in the same tree he hung my kid. Then I would turn him over to the police. A little “eye for an eye’ thing.Recommend

  • an indian
    Aug 20, 2011 - 3:58PM

    This is what happens when religion is given too much prominence. Hindus are not mad about their religion. In our cases, we go to temples on rare occasions. We pray ver rarely. But does not mean we are any way less pious.

    Religion is like a hornet’s nest. If the hornets leave the nest, everybody gets stung.Recommend

  • Najib
    Aug 20, 2011 - 4:20PM

    We offer our children to semi literate individuals to learn about the Creator, Omnipotent & the All knowing. Whereas, for schooling we make sure that they are sent to the best of Schools (British Curriculum) etc. Here I am mentioning the middle class urban population. In rural areas the tenet of religion is held by “Absolute illetertaes” and demonizing the Religion itself is a sign of utter ignorance.

    Christianity “Turn the other Cheek (TM)” cannot be blamed for the mayhem in Norway, neither can Hinduism “The Pacifist Philosophy (TM)” for the atrocities in Kashmir and Gujarat and how about Judaism (TM) for the various excesses all over Palestine and surrounding countries. Its fashionable now to blame religion which in depth means blaming God for all the mess in the world. Please take heed in what we write and profess,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,

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  • Xyz
    Aug 20, 2011 - 5:27PM

    Disgusting. Maybe someone should give that animal a taste of his own medicine by doing to him what he did to the young boyRecommend

  • Mani
    Aug 20, 2011 - 8:54PM

    @Javed:

    Instead of expecting Imran Khan to be there for every incident, please enlighten us what you yourself are doing about this situation? Sitting behind a keyboard and making snarky comments is a lot easier than doing something constructive.

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  • Naveed Salman
    Aug 21, 2011 - 4:53PM

    I strongly condemn this brutual act torture of 7 year old kid at the hand of this cleric for such a trivial matter. He was a student and still in the process of learning.
    I simply don’t understand the logic of memorizing the Holy text. Isn’t it a better idea to burn a CD, or write a book to preserve these Holy verses, because such methods are much more reliable then a human memorizing it.
    Secondly, why don’t our clerics (and for that matter even educationists) understand that it is always better to undertand the underlying philosphy behind the text, rather memorizing it like dumb CD??

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  • Sulman shaikh
    Aug 24, 2011 - 10:11AM

    this is a really sad incident. We can not blame Islam for this, this has clearly to do with the culture. I have visited many Madersa’s in Arab countries and it is strictly forbidden to hit a child, in fact the scholars there are taking in to account the theories about Dyslexia and dealing with the children accordingly.

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  • amir jafri
    Aug 24, 2011 - 10:58AM

    The secularoon Liberaloons will dig every stone to malign Islam and Muslims…Please pay more attention and promptly print stuff about what goes on in the “Christian” english-mediums..
    Khusraaism and Heejraaism is now something to flaunt and a part of being called advanced and maaadren….

    P.S: Even if this is not printed it will still be read by the agents of the West…and that is all that matters. This will be sent to other Ba Ba Blacksheep rags mentioning that it was not printed here.

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  • Talha
    Aug 24, 2011 - 11:06AM

    STOP GENERALIZING !!! Well, to all of you who are saying “religion is the cause” bla bla ? Don’t you know any of the childs beaten up in the school severely by their teachers , so should I say “scientific education caused them to do so !”. Please be wise …

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  • abginay
    Aug 24, 2011 - 11:11AM

    i thimk so such kind of person should b banned in dis kind of teaching.this types of persons project a bad picture of islam

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  • asdfg
    Aug 24, 2011 - 11:28AM

    a time will come when molvies will be the worst creature on earth…….THIS IS THE TIME….

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  • Wakas Mir
    Aug 24, 2011 - 1:49PM

    @Mohd.: It is religion of peace, so stop trying to act smart. What one person does has absolutely no connection with the religion he belongs to.

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  • Furki Mughal
    Aug 24, 2011 - 2:09PM

    Incident because of Illiteracy ,,,,, Madursa is that place where we sent our brother, sisters, sons, daughters for learning Islam but i shocked to see that circumstances ,,,,, Islami teacher beats brutally student for the forgotten of one verse how strange ,,,,, Islam is the religion of peace and love and what the hell was that Qari doing there ,,,,, and standing salute for our brave police ,,,, i have not words for our police ,,,,, he should be punished and all bros and sis for your kind information this is not first case of brutality of that arose in out country there are several cases of Pakistan

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  • LPJ
    Aug 25, 2011 - 4:32AM

    @Hasan:
    There’s nothing wrong with studying religion along with other subjects but memorizing the Quran isn’t a good way to learn it, understanding the meaning is more important.

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  • amir jafri
    Aug 26, 2011 - 3:18PM

    Ref to:amir jafri
    Aug 24, 2011 – 10:58AM

    P.S: Even if this is not printed it will still be read by the agents of the West…and that is all that matters. This will be sent to other Ba Ba Blacksheep rags mentioning that it was not printed here.

    Ha Ha Ha! so now you decide to print it..from…Henceforth all my comments will be posted with this caveat….The secularoon and liberaloon thugs have a lot lying in wait bfor them. Pakistan shall always me an Islamic state and increasingly so…Secularoon and liberaloon must learn from Iran and run as fast as they can to their uncle.

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  • Sep 6, 2011 - 12:45AM

    I heard a couple of parents, who sent their children to the brutal molvis to learn by heart the Quran, that the children will learn by heart only if the molvi is brutal. They parents also said that when their child will learn Quran by heart, all the sins of them (the parents) will be washed out.

    As such it is the selfishness of the parents that they put their children at the mercy of brutal molvis just to get the satisfaction that their own sins will be washed out by this act.

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  • Sep 6, 2011 - 1:12AM

    @adnak:
    Not all molvis and teachers are bad. There will always be some people with mental health issues and who display aggressive behaviour. Even in India most of the parents keep quiet even when they come to know children are being beaten by teachers. They keep quiet and let the poor child suffer. I as a child was made to stand by one of my teachers from morning to afternoon. My brother was slapped by one of the teachers in front of my own eyes yet I kept quiet. I didnt tell my parents then. But atleast now I hope the society changes and the govt sends a responsible fact finding team to investigate these wrongdoings. There is no place for violence and physical abuse in a place of worship.

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  • Shehzad
    Sep 6, 2011 - 4:40PM

    Why are we focusing so much on memorizing verses of Holy Quran? Will that make our children loyal to our religion or just make them another cruel, ignorant & aggressive molvi? They must understand the message behind each verse.

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  • Taha
    Sep 9, 2011 - 9:12AM

    salaam,
    Memorising quran is a very great act. Ahamdulillah i am doing it my teacher has never hit me once, but in Islam it is okay to hit. Your Parents can hit and ur teachers can hit but it can only be done to teach them a lesson. See this Sheikh beat up the kid (i think that kinda harsh) but now the kid will try 110% harder and hittin is fine but as much as this man did i dont think it shold have gone to such an extent

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  • Sep 9, 2011 - 3:45PM

    @Dr Priyanka

    My observation is that more than 90% of molvi teachers are cruel. BTW memorizing Quran is similar to converting the kid into a tape-recorder and nothing more. Most of those who memorize do not understand what it is all about. And most of them forget it after a lapse of some time.

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