Christian Man Killed Month After Recovery Of ‘Forcibly Converted’ Minor Daughter

Christian Man Killed Month After Recovery Of ‘Forcibly Converted’ Minor Daughter
A Christian man named Basharat Masih - the father of a 12-year-old girl who was kidnapped, forcedly converted, and married to Usman -  was killed on April 24 in Faisalabad.

Basharat was contesting a pigeon-flying competition, during which a conflict erupted that led to his brutal murder. According to Basharat’s sister, Maryam Bibi, her brother was attacked by a group equipped with lethal and pointed tools that caused the demise of Basharat. He received serious injuries during the attack and succumbed to death shortly thereafter.

It is pertinent to mention here that Basharat’s 12-year-old daughter, Hoorab, used to work at a grocery store owned by a man named Muhammad Mustafa. On December 22, 2022, Mustafa and his accomplice Muhammad Usman abducted the minor girl and sifted her to Chiniot, a city around 40 km away from Faisalabad, where she was forcibly converted to Islam and married Usman.

After fighting a legal battle, Basharat succeeded in proving that the marriage was void because the girl was underage. On March 24, a local court ordered the return of the minor girl to her family, which included her father and three brothers.

While condemning the brutal murder of Basharat, minority rights activist Joseph Jansen said Basharat kept on voicing concern throughout the trial that he and his family members were facing life threats.

He said that the killing seems to be the consequence of his legal fight for the recovery of his minor daughter, who was subjected to forced conversion and marriage by local Muslims.

He stressed that minor disputes over pigeon-flying competitions had never resulted in such tragic conclusions in the history of Pakistan, adding that this could be revenge as he raised his voice and fought a legal battle for the recovery of his minor daughter.

He emphasized that after the murder of Basharat, Hoorab and her siblings are now more vulnerable and could fall prey to any other inhumane miscreant. He urged the authorities concerned to ensure the protection and safety of orphan children.