LONDON: The brother of a Harry Potter film actor was jailed for six months Friday for assaulting her because her boyfriend was not Muslim.
Afshan Azad, 21, who played Potter’s classmate Padma Patil in the smash hit films, was subjected to a “prolonged and nasty” beating over her Hindu boyfriend.
Her brother Ashraf Azad, 28, overheard her talking on the phone to her boyfriend and subjected to her a lengthy ordeal before her family in which she feared for her life.
The actor called for leniency and begged the judge not to jail her brother. However, Roger Thomas sent Ashraf Azad to prison for six months after he pleaded guilty to assault.
“This persistent attack was accompanied by serious and very hurtful abuse and threats,” he said. “ This is a sentence that is designed to punish you for what you did and also to send out a clear message to others that domestic violence involving circumstances as such have arisen here cannot be tolerated.”
The assault left the actor with swelling, grazes and bruises around her eyes, face, left ear, forehead and forearms. Prosecutor Richard Vardon told the court that her brother dragged her downstairs by the hair and punched her repeatedly.
Her father suggested sending her back to Bangladesh for an arranged marriage, while her mother called her a “prostitute”.
Her brother then said: “I’m going to kill you. I’m actually going to kill you”, and left the room, with the door locked behind him by one of the women. He was then heard “rattling through kitchen drawers” before shouting: “Where are the knives?”
The following day, Afshan fled the family home through the bedroom window and now lives in London.
Published in The Express Tribune, January 23rd, 2011.
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