WSC delegation informs the UN about the gross human rights violations, extrajudicial killings, and forced conversions of young Sindhi girls in Sindh
15 Mar 2015
On March 11, 2015, a delegation of World Sindhi Congress (WSC) comprising of Dr. Lakhu Luhana, Dr. Hidayat Bhutto and Gul Sanai met with the representative of the UN office of the Commissioner for Human Rights in charge of the Pakistan Chapter in Geneva, Switzerland. The delegation presented an overview of WSC and its activities in a nut shell. Dr. Lakhu Luhana presented the human rights situation in Sindh. They highlighted the extrajudicial killings, targeted killings and enforced disappearances of Sindhi activists. The delegation informed the officials that the mutilated bodies of 20 Sindhi political activists have been found in 2014 alone. They said that many cases have been reported by Human Rights Watch, Amnesty International, and Asian Human Rights Action. They also highlighted that many of these brutal killings were perpetrated against the young, educated, and peace loving Sindhi human rights defenders belonging to Jeay Sindh Mutahaida Mahaz and Jeay Sindh Quomi Mahaz, both national political parties of Sindh which are struggling for freedom of their historic land and basic human rights, including right of self determination. WSC requested the UN’s urgent action to insure the release of Kamlesh Kumar, a university student who was abducted by agency personnel on the 1st of December 2014 in order to save his precious life.
Dr. Lakhu Luhana also raised the cases of forced conversions and kidnappings of Sindhi Hindus girls who are facing an increased wave of discrimination. He informed the UN representative that 19 cases of Hindu girls as young as six years have been converted to Islam and forcibly married in 2014. Sindhis are culturally tolerant, secular and peace-loving people who have lived in the ancient area of Sindh with people of all religious thoughts and schools without any conflict through the centuries. Delegates also highlighted the spread of religious extremism and reported that there are at least 20,000 institutions in Sindh which are mainly funded by foreign resources spreading hatred and are working under the patronage of the government itself. They also mentioned several incidents of destruction and burning of temples and holy books of Christians, Hindus and Ahmedis that recently took place in Sindh, the land of mystics.
The delegation also raised concerns over the sudden influx of non-Sindhis in Sindh from other provinces of Pakistan, misappropriation of valuable land, and mega city building such as Bahria town, Zulfiquar Abad. Sindhi indigenous people consider it a planned conspiracy to alter the demography of Sindh and turn Sindhis into a minority in their own land.
The delegation requested urgent action for the release of Kamlesh Kumar as well as intervention to investigate the atrocities and gross violations of human rights occurring in Sindh. WSC handed over the reports on the above issues to the UN. The representative of the UN office of the commissioner for Human Rights in charge of the Pakistan Chapter assured that they would take necessary action in accordance with the UN protocol and will ask the special repporteurs of relevant mandate to follow the matter. It was mutually agreed that WSC would provide the electronic copies of these reports and other required information at their earliest convenience and the UN Representative will also look into the mechanisms related to indigenous people in order to protect their basic human rights, including culture, language and sovereignty.