Another minor Hindu girl was abducted in Pakistan's Sindh region on Monday. This is the latest case after two minor Hindu girls were abducted, forced to convert to Islam and were married to Muslim men.
According to a report by The Times of India, the 16-year-old girl, Mala Kumari Meghwar, belongs to Badin district in Sindh province in Pakistan. A Hindu leader in the region claimed that the police has refused to file an FIR regarding the abduction.
Hari Ram Kishore Lal, the leader of minority affairs in Pakistan, has asked the police to file an FIR and also directed Sindh minorities affairs director Mushtaq Ahmed to start working on the immediate recovery of the girl. Mala's abduction is the eighth abduction of minor Hindu girls in Pakistan this year.
Just days before Mala's abduction, two teenage sisters, 15-year-old Reena and 13-year-old Ravina were abducted on the eve of Holi celebrations, forcibly converted to Islam and married to Muslim men. This sparked a nation-wide outrage in India and triggered many protests. A video also surfaced of a cleric performing the nikaah (marriage) ceremony of the two girls.
An Islamabad court then ordered the protection of the two girls as the investigation was being conducted to make sure that the girls were indeed abducted, forcibly converted and married. The Pakistani police arrested the seven people, involved in the incident, including the cleric who performed the nikaah.
Minority minister Hari Kishore Ram Lal was quoted as saying by PTI that marriage of underage girls was banned as part of the Sindh Child Marriages Restraint Act 2013. However, reports have stated that at least 25 child marriages take place in the Umerkot district in Sindh Province which houses the majority of Pakistan's Hindu population.
Ramesh Kumar Vankwani, a Hindu leader part of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaaf, has brought up two bills and one resolution in the National Assembly. They addressed child marriage, forced conversions and the protection of minorities in the country.
Vankwani told TOI that he wants to make provisions in the Child Marriage Restraint Act. The provision is regarding the right of freedom of marriage and to also ban child marriages. The second bill which Vankwani tabled was addressing the forced conversion of religion. The Criminal Law (Protection of Minorities) Act, 2019, will say that according to TOI, "no person shall be deemed to have changed his or her religion until attaining the age of 18 years."