Parents and husbands both lost out before the Supreme Court on Tuesday, when the court rejected pleas in two separate cases to meet Hindu girls allegedly forced to convert to Islam and marry Muslims.
The court observed that both girls should make a decision about their future and whom they wanted to return to – parents or husbands – with ‘free will’, and it will take up the matter in this regard on April 18.
Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry, heading a three-judge bench, took up two separate applications seeking permission to hold a meeting with the Hindu girls at a shelter in Karachi.
Naveed Shah, the husband of Faryal (Rinkle Kumari), moved an application through his counsel Abdul Mujeeb Pirzada. Pirzada said that Faryal was being kept like a prisoner but the bench dismissed the argument, saying Majida Rizwi’s shelter home was not a prison.
Dr Ramesh, father of another Hafsa (Dr Lata), also submitted a plea through his counsel Nasir Mangle to hold a meeting with his daughter at the shelter. The court also turned down his application, saying the issue would be examined on April 18.
Naveed Shah’s attorney said that policemen were not allowing his client to meet his wife at the shelter. He added that his client was not even permitted to provide his wife with clothes.
“You must be aware that she (Rinkle) wanted to go with her mother at the last hearing and think about her future till the next date of hearing,” the chief justice told him.
The court, however, asked the counsel to give the clothes or other products to the Sindh advocate general who would provide them to Rinkle.
On March 26, the court sent the two girls to the shelter in order to make a decision about where they should return on their own.
MNA Abdul Haq alias Mian Mitho Pir of Bharchondi Sharif also attended the court proceedings. While talking to The Express Tribune, the Pakistan Peoples Party’s MNA said that Rinkle was like a daughter to him and expressed concern over her health. Responding to a question, he said that despite the party’s pressure, he would not leave Rinkle at the mercy of anyone else.
Published in The Express Tribune, April 11th, 2012.