Abduction and conversion of Sikh girl in Pakistan: FIR against accused quashed

LAHORE: Police in Pakistan’s Punjab province have quashed the FIR against a Muslim man and others for allegedly abducting a Sikh teenage girl and converting her to Islam after both families signed a written agreement, a senior official said on Wednesday.

Jagjit Kaur, the 19-year-old daughter of a Sikh priest of Nankana Sahib, was allegedly abducted by Mohammad Hasaan of her locality in Nankana Sahib, some 80kms from Lahore in August.

He allegedly married her later.

“The families of Kaur and Hassan have signed a written document agreeing to resolve the matter between them. Kaur’s family has withdrawn all charges against Hassan and his family members and friends, thereby, the FIR against them stands quashed,” a senior police officer of Punjab police told on Wednesday.

He said Hassan and a couple of his other family members have also withdrawn their protective bails in the wake of the agreement.

A video of the girl’s family had gone viral on social media in which one of her family members had alleged that a group of men attacked their house and she was abducted and forcibly converted to Islam and was married Hassan, triggering concerns in Pakistan as well as in India.

On August 29, the FIR was filed against six people for allegedly abducting and forcibly converting Kaur to Islam.

The police arrested Arsalan, a friend of Hassan.

Kaur has been to sent to Lahore’s Darul Aman (shelter home on a court order after she told the judge that she married Hassan of her locality with her own free will.

Punjab Chief Minister Usman Buzdar and Governor Chaudhry Sarwar were forced to intervene in the matter after the Sikh community reacted angrily over the alleged abduction of the girl from the community.

“In the agreement it has been decided that Hassan will not force Kaur to stay with him and will divorce her if she asks for it.

Kaur’s family has also pledged that it will not harm the girl by any means on her return to the home,” the official said.

The girl is still in a shelter home in Lahore as she is not “mentally prepared” at the moment to return to her parents’ home in Nankana Sahib, the police official claimed.

“It has also been agreed that Kaur will not see Hassan or vice a versa even he doesn’t divorce her,” the official said.

India had voiced its concern with Pakistan over the issue of her abduction and forced conversion to Islam and sought for “immediate remedial action”.

Ahead of opening of the Kartarpur Corridor and 550 birth anniversary of Guru Nanak Dev, the Pakistani government cannot afford annoyance of local Sikhs which created tension among the Sikhs and Muslims in Nankana Sahib, the official said.