Forced Conversions And Marriages, A Weapon To Persecute Christians.

Farrukh Saif

June 27, 2023

Forced Conversion :

Today, we share another heart-wrenching story from last month’s rescue mission. Farooq and Razia, along with their two daughters, were living as slaves in a brick kiln in Pakistan.

Farooq, a daily-wage laborer, faced severe hardships during the COVID-19 pandemic, making survival difficult. In their time of need, a relative introduced them to the kiln owner, who provided them with a loan of 50,000 Pakistani rupees.

The following day, the entire family began working at the kiln. A year later, Farooq Masih suffered a stroke due to high blood pressure, and the family had to borrow more money for his medical treatment, plunging them further into crisis.

With Farooq unable to work, the kiln owner coerced the family into marrying their daughter off to an elderly Muslim man. Although the family resisted, the owner’s influence prevailed, and their daughter was forcibly married to a Muslim friend.

It’s crucial to understand that neither the kiln owner nor his associates intended to grant these Christian girls the status of proper wives. Instead, the marriages served as a cover for their illicit desires, protecting them from potential legal repercussions.

Listen to Razia’s testimony:

While Razia worked alone at the brick kiln and her daughter cared for her ailing father, both the kiln owner and manager pressured her to either bring her daughter to work or marry her off to a Muslim man.

Forcing to Convert to Islam

To safeguard her family from further harm, Razia began bringing her daughter to the brickyard to make bricks. Meanwhile, the kiln owner, driven by a desire to convert all Christian workers to Islam, allied himself with Islamic extremists in pursuit of his goals.

Conversely, the kiln owner’s harassment and intimidation escalated. He started visiting Christian homes, forcing them to recite the Islamic Kalma. Those who resisted faced beatings and torture.

Razia stood firm in her faith, refusing to convert to Islam. She declared that she and her family were born Christians and would remain so. In response, the kiln owner threatened to take her daughter and marry her to a Muslim if the family failed to repay their debt.

Thankfully, Razia and her family, along with 17 other Christian families, were rescued from the shackles of kiln slavery. Additionally, we successfully rescued Razia’s elder daughter, Noreen, who was forcibly married to a Muslim man at the age of 16. We have filed for the annulment of the marriage in the local court, and we are hopeful for a positive outcome in this legal battle.

Farrukh Saif

Farrukh H. Saif, a courageous Christian human rights activist, established the Farrukh Saif Foundation in 2009 to confront religious discrimination, blasphemy laws, and bonded slavery in Pakistan. His dedication to liberating bonded laborers from brick kilns and advocating for blasphemy victims and asylum seekers has garnered international acclaim. Despite encountering threats and fatwas, his impactful work persists in supporting marginalized communities. In 2018, the foundation merged with The Emergency Committee to Save the Persecuted and Enslaved, enhancing its global outreach.

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