Missing Hindu woman, six children ‘convert’ to Islam in Karachi
- Ramji Meghwar, the husband of Radha, 36, reported last week his entire family was missing
- Local seminary issues conversion certificate
- The Meghwar community say they still did not know the whereabouts of the Ramji family
A Hindu woman and her six children, including teenage daughters, ‘converted’ to Islam on the day they were reported missing to the police by her husband, according to a certificate of conversion issued by a seminary.
The husband, Ramji Meghwar, came to know about the conversion nine days after his wife Radha, 36; daughters Mira, 16, Pira, 15, and Piya, 14; and sons Amar, 10, Jay Ram, 7, and Gopal, 4, went missing on Sunday, May 7.
Ramji Meghwar lodged an FIR at the Gulbahar Police Station on May 7 saying he lived in the area with his wife and children and found his family missing when he returned from work at around 4:30pm on Sunday.
Gulbahar is a low-income neighbourhood near the Lyari River and is also known as Golimar.
Ramji tried to contact his wife and the eldest daughter on their phones, which, he found switched off.
Radha was employed as domestic help at a house in Clifton, a rich neighbourhood located around 15km from Gulbahar. Rajmi told the police that he inquired after Radha at her workplace but she was not found there as well.
According to the FIR, Ramji said some unknown person or persons had taken away his wife and children after enticing them, with the intent of rape. The FIR has been registered under Section 496-A of the Pakistan Penal Code. The section is titled “Enticing or taking away or detaining with criminal intent a woman”.
Hameer Meghwar, a leader of the Meghwar community, told Aaj News that Ramji informed the community about the disappearance of his wife and children on Monday, May 8, after spending the night trying to find them.
The Meghwar community and Ramji finally learnt about the “conversion” when they received a copy of the conversion certificate issued by Jamia Binoria Aalamia, a well-known seminary in Karachi.
The certificate was issued by the New Muslim Foundation department of the Jamia Binoria Aalamia and it said Radha and her six children had converted to Islam “of their free will” on May 7.
The certificate listed the Hindu and Muslim names of the ‘converts’ and provided the birth dates of the children. It said Radha had been renamed Rida, while Mira had become Fatima. Pira was now Mah Noor, Piya was Nimra. Amar had been renamed as Umar, Jay Ram as Ayan, and Gopal as Zeeshan.
Sindh province has reported multiple cases of forced conversion of Hindu and Christian women in recent years.
However, speaking to Aaj News, Hameer Meghwar said the Meghwar community did not know who was behind the conversion of Ramji’s wife and children. “We don’t name anyone and we have not raised suspicions about anyone,” he said.
Hameer said Ramji had moved to Karachi with his wife and children from Mirpurkhas town a couple of years ago to improve his income.
This week, other members of his family from Mirpurkhas traveled to Karachi to find and locate Radha and her children but in vain.
The certificate from the New Muslim Foundation of Jamia Binoria Aalamia did not give any clue about the whereabouts of the women and children.
An introduction on the seminary’s website says the New Muslim Foundation “department is founded for the aid of different newly Muslim families and individuals of different part of country or globe. Facilities including food, residence, employment, medical and many more are provided to them without any cost. Hundreds of individuals and families are reverted after getting assurance of this support.”
Aaj News tried to contact the New Muslim Foundation on their phone number but the calls went unanswered.
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