The father of a 12-year-old Christian girl – kidnapped, raped, shackled hand and foot, and forced to work from dusk till dawn – has at last spoken out about her ordeal.
When police rescued Farah Shaheen from the Faisalabad house of 45-year-old Khizar Ahmed Ali (Hayat) in December 2020, she was too traumatised to speak but, bit by bit, has revealed her harrowing five-month ordeal to her father, Asif Masih.
In a statement to Aid to the Church in Need, Mr Masih said his daughter was attached to a chain and forced to work all day “as a slave” damaging her shackled hands and feet in the process.
Mr Masih said:
““Farah has told me she was treated like a slave. She was forced to work all day, cleaning filth in a cattle yard. 24-7 she was attached to a chain.”
Condemning Mr Ahmed for forcing Farah to marry him and convert to Islam, he said: “She was sexually assaulted by her abductor and raped multiple times by [his] landlords”.
Mr Masih went on to pay tribute to those who are supporting abducted girls in Pakistan, including Bishop Iftikhar Indryas, and called on people to pray for Farah and an end to abductions and forced conversions in the country.
Describing the mistreatment of girls from minority faith backgrounds as “a cancer in our society”, he said: “I beg you to demand that the Government stops this evil in its tracks and brings the culprits to justice.”
Pakistan’s Movement for Solidarity and Peace estimates that up to 1,000 young Christian and Hindu females between 12 and 25 are abducted each year.