Forced conversion: With court appearance, hope that truth will emerge on Rinkle’s choice

Published: March 7, 2012

Rinkle Kumari fell in love with Naveed Shah, eloped, converted at Dargah Bharchoondi Sharif and married him.

SUKKUR: 

A Hindu teenager at the centre of a forced conversion controversy is scheduled to appear before the chief justice on March 12 when it is hoped the truth will emerge.

There are two versions to this story. In one, Rinkle Kumari fell in love with Naveed Shah, eloped, converted at Dargah Bharchoondi Sharif and married him. In the other, she was kidnapped, forced to convert and marry him.

Rinkle’s father Nand Lal has enlisted the help of lawyer Noor Naz Agha who filed a petition. Agha told The Express Tribune over the phone that the problem was how the case was handled.

When Rinkle was produced before a Ghotki civil judge on February 25 she asked for two days to think over her situation. But instead of sending her to a shelter, the judge handed her over to the police. Agha felt this was wrong because Rinkle is a victim and not an accused person. It was while she was in police custody that she came under tremendous pressure. When she made a statement in front of the Mirpur Mathelo civil judge two days later, she spoke in favour of Naveed Shah.

Given that this has happened, Agha has requested the SHC to now allow Rinkle to record her statement in an environment free from pressure.

Meanwhile, a lawyer has filed a petition in the Sindh High Court’s Sukkur bench, requesting police protection for Rinkle and Naveed.

Rinkle’s family says she was kidnapped from home in Mirpur Mathelo on February 24.

They blame Pakistan Peoples Party MNA Mian Abdul Haq and his men. They say she was taken to Bharchoondi Sharif, where one of the MNA’s supporters, a man named Naveed Shah, forced her to convert and married her, albeit without her consent. There has been an outcry and Hindus, Christians and Sikhs protested in Karachi on Sunday. The matter has even been brought up in the Sindh Assembly.

Dargah supporters

Amid these developments comes a protest by people from the shrine where Rinkle and Naveed are said to have sought refuge.

The supporters of Dargah Bharchoondi Sharif have rubbished allegations that the shrine was involved in the forced conversion and marriage. On Tuesday, the dargah’s supporters marched 13 kilometres from Daharki to Mirpur Mathelo where they packed Bhittai Chowk to register their protest. They maintain that the forced conversion allegation was just an attempt to malign the dargah.

The protest was led by the dargah’s Mian Mohammad Aslam and Mian Shaman of Bharchoondi Sharif. They claimed that the couple took shelter at the shrine.

Aslam said that he immediately contacted Rinkle’s parents and the president of the Hindu Panchayat in Daharki to inform them that the couple was seeking shelter at the shrine. He said that her parents did not come to the dargah even though he waited for five hours. After this wait, he claims that Rinkle embraced Islam and was married to Naveed Shah.

“Nobody can be converted by force,” he said, “because neither Islam nor the law of the land allow it.” Aslam also maintained that Rinkle was allowed to meet her parents separately twice but she went against them. When she was presented in court, he said, she was not under pressure and gave a statement under oath that she wanted to go with her husband.

Aslam said that thousands of non-Muslims have embraced Islam at the shrine and not a single person has claimed to have been forced.

Informed sources from Mirpur Mathelo claimed that Rinkle and Naveed lived in Sufi Mohallah.

Published in The Express Tribune, March 7th, 2012.

Reader Comments (7)

  • Mar 8, 2012 - 3:19PM

    Time to say Khuda Hafiz to my motherland..

    Recommend

  • Lone Star
    Mar 8, 2012 - 10:17PM

    No it isn’t time to leave, it’s time to fight these terrorists. They are in different shapes and forms. Hindus are not alone, Christians, Sikhs, Shias, and Ahmadi are also facing the similar attrocities. Fight them all the way, don’t quit.

    Recommend

  • Mir Agha
    Mar 9, 2012 - 12:34AM

    i thought secularism was all for freedom of religion. Ironically, Sharia would not allow such a hasty move on the part of Faryal, and neither the disowning of her parents.

    Recommend

  • Minorities
    Mar 9, 2012 - 1:54AM

    I am personally very sad to say , that i being the hindu and Son of my Land Sindh , should leave my motherland.

    My land is very lovely to me , but seeing the attrocities , i personally believe that every second person beside me as Osama After this Case, even the media Persons who are not partial at this time.

    I did not hope this much from the Pakistani Media, and Anchors, who took it lightly ,and onesided.

    We also had hope from the Chief Justice , would take sour action , but chief justice made a official order , which was not implemented .

    Mian Mithoo The MNA of PPP ,( the Most Extremist person like Osama Bin Laden) has very vast history of doing attrocities and forcebily conversion of Hindus.

    Mian Mithoos late Father Killed the Hindu Saint KAnwar Ram , on the base that he should stop preaching his people of Hinduism and Sufisim . Sant Kanwar Ram was the The GURU of hindus .

    I Appeal to international Media and community that the demons like Mian Mithoo must bear the heavy damages and the hindu community must be given Justice.

    Tommorow the Religious Extremist like Mian Mithoo Can turn to be Osama Bin Laden and can entere the countries of the international community and can harm in your house.Recommend

  • Aadarsh
    Mar 10, 2012 - 7:51AM

    Now time is almost gone,they left girl with the boy and with many armed men for so long time,girl’s brain is washed, she can not make any right decision until she is not meeting with her family in private.one thing is true parents always are in betterment for their children because they are same blood , any child who put their parents in troubles,they never get happiness in their life.Any one who is in favour of this case (Rinkle& Naveed) ,should think first ,if this will happened to you sister or daughter what will be your reaction. Please be good and do good ,you will get shower of happiness.

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  • pankaj
    Mar 12, 2012 - 4:22PM

    if these has not been stopped tomorrow goons and gangs will targets muslim girls as well.u willl see soon watever they want they will do

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  • Human right
    Mar 26, 2012 - 10:37AM

    It is very shameful for pakistan that it is not able to protect the rights of hundu minorities. There are numerous cases in which non-hindus are forcefully converted to islam. Forced conversion is shameful to all the pakistani national as well as all the muslims around the world.Recommend

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