Doctor rapes Christian student nurse, sexual assault and violence adds greatly to minorities vulnerability

Posted on July 17, 2010 by

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by Junaid Qaiser

Source:  LUBP

A third-year Christian nursing student in the Jinnah Postgraduate Medical Centre (JPMC), Karachi  was found unconscious with a head injury near Doctors’ Backyard Mess after a Medico-Legal Officer (MLO), Dr Jabbar Memon allegedly raped her,  the media reported  on Wednesday. Dr Jabbar was also found  with a fractured femur (hip bone) just besides the girl.
The media further reported that the initial reports have confirmed that the girl was raped by the MLO. Muslim doctor threw her from fourth floor of Jinnah Post Graduate Medical Center Karachi after allegedly raping her. The visitors of patient see, a girl in nursing uniform being thrown from fourth floor by a person in white coat of doctors and call hospital security. The victim is a Christian aged 23 and daughter of a poor Christian family who dreams good future for his daughter after graduation in JPMC School of Nursing.  As the news reaches to his father that her daughter is raped and alleged rapist doctor have attempted to kill her, he rushes to hospital where he finds her dreams in critical conditions fighting for life on hospital bed.

In Pakistan, under reported cases of rape and torture of religious minority women and girls presents an ever present human rights crisis. A larger pattern of violence directed not only at Christians women, but at other religious minorities women throughout the country. There have been a number of reported cases of forced marriages of girls and conversion from religious minority communities who are under the age of 15. After separation from their family, abductions are framed with the pretext that their conversion to Islam was the reason for their kidnapping. In some cases, there may be a possibility that these are unidentified sex-trafficking kidnappings. For protection, minority women and their families, whether poor or middle class, often try to hide or mask their religious beliefs for safety at work and in public. Minorities women experienced, that they had been asked numerous times by others if they would convert to Islam. Basic women’s rights and human rights are often out of reach for these women who daily experience conditions of extreme poverty. Christian women who have been severely marginalized often suffer from a shortage of even the simplest basic needs. Lack of health care is common. Slum conditions can also be found where families are forced to live on the streets or to live together in crowded poorly constructed shelters, amid garbage, toxic chemicals and refuse. Their structures often have no electricity, heat or clean water. Pakistan’s blasphemy laws are so vaguely formulated that they encourage, and in fact invite, the persecution of religious minorities or non-conforming members of [the] Muslim majority. Discriminatory legislation and the State’s failure to take action against societal forces hostile to those who practice a different religious belief fostered religious intolerance, acts of violence, and intimidation against religious minorities. Even in some cases law enforcement personnel abused religious minorities in custody. The intimidation through abduction, rape or violence of women and girls from minority religious families adds greatly to their vulnerability. Any legal recourse with police or courts, in working Pakistani law in their favor, is often very limited.

Religious minorities need more than just fair treatment under the law, they also require visible cooperation from the police and authorities, to halt this sort of further incidences especially related to religious discrimination, punitive action should be as exemplary that no one can commit this type of crime in future.

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