KARACHI: Kidnapped and forced into sex work at the age of 12 years, N, a Hindu girl, thought it was a nightmare that would never end.
Duped by a man named Younus who was welcomed into the family home in Teen Hatti as an old friend, N and her family never suspected that a man who showered attention and presents on them would do such a thing. N claims that he would drop by their house quite often and one day when she was alone he showed up with his wife and lured her to their house in Korangi.
What followed remained a mystery for two years till August 23 – the day she escaped.
An unlatched door led N, now 14 years old, to freedom from the brothel in Nasir colony run by Younus, his wife and son Rehman. She was forced to work as a sex worker along with three young girls, including two other Hindu girls, who escaped with her.
N claimed that one of the girls had been abducted before her while the other two were brought in after her. She was taken to the Abbasi Shaheed Hospital for a medical examination where the medico-legal officer said that N’s results showed that she had routine sexual intercourse. The officer added that she had been given a contraceptive injection every two months to avoid a pregnancy.
N said that she was forced to do what her captors said, as they had drugged her. She told The Express Tribune that sometimes she had two to three visitors per night and the family charged them Rs1,500 to Rs2,000 per person.
Cursing her time at the brothel, N added that Younus and his son sexually abused her and the other girls as well.
Talking about the girls who had escaped with her, N explained that they hired a rickshaw and instructed the driver to head towards a main road. She added that when they recognised the area, she dropped off the girls and went to her parent’s house in Teen Hatti. “Her family immediately contacted Roshni Helpline, a child rights non-government organisation (NGO) that had been following the case for two years,” said the NGO’s Mohammad Ali.
Ali told The Express Tribune that a neighbour caught Rehman trying to stop one of the girls from escaping.
In his statement in front of the authorities, Rehman admitted that his family had been involved in the business and they targeted young girls from different minorities. “Their backgrounds were not influential so there was little that they could do once their daughter was abducted,” he said. “The brothel ran unnoticed in a small area usually inhabited by labourers.”
While Younus and his wife are still at large, the investigating officer ASI Rana Nisar from the Supermarket police station in Liaquatabad claimed that Rehman’s statement had provided leads to his parent’s whereabouts. He added that they would conduct another raid to find out more.
Published in The Express Tribune, August 25th, 2011.