London: (By Hannah Chowdhry) Rimsha is depressed but receives support from her family.
A Christian woman was raped by her Muslim employer, who called her into his private quarters at the end of her shift.
After the ordeal, the woman’s family, still reeling from news of the sexual assault, were greeted by an armed gang at their home the next morning, demanding that they all return to work.
Rimsha Riaz (18) worked in a glass-crushing business alongside family members who were all loyal and hard-working employees of Haji Kbar Ali, a successful Muslim businessman. Mumtaz Bibi (wearing pink) with her daughter Rimsha (wearing blue). The family members reported to work as usual on July 6, 2022 and after a tiring shift they were all ready to go home. As they were all packing and getting ready to leave, a messenger was sent from Mr. Ali’s offices requesting the presence of Rimsha Riaz for some additional work that was needed.
It was around 7:30 p.m., so his mother Mumtaz Bibi (how old), his brother Arslan (17) and his older brother Adnan (25) went home.
About an hour later, Rimsha arrived home and was visibly upset. Her mother questioned her about the work Rimsha had done for Mr Ali, to which she burst into tears and informed her family that she had been raped at gunpoint. The family still accepts the attack. Rimsha spoke with BACA about the attack, she said:
“In his office, Mr Ali pulled out his gun and threatened to kill me if I didn’t do what he wanted.
“He then started raping me.
“I screamed as loud as I could, but no one came to help me.
“After he finished with me, Mr. Ali put the gun to my ear and threatened to kill my brothers and other members of my family, if I dared tell anyone.”
When Mr. Akbar was done with his rape and threats, he sat down and let Rimsha go. Rimsha took the opportunity to straighten up and ran home.
His mother ordered the family never to return to work again but did not go to the police, as Christian families are generally afraid of them and expect little justice.
However, after two days, on July 8, Mr. Ali arrived at their house in the evening with four armed men and knocked loudly on their door with the butt of his pistol. Mr. Ali shouted at the family that they must open the door or face serious consequences. Rimsha’s brother Arslan opened the door, scared of what might happen to the family and was shocked to see all the armed men. The family is afraid of the Muslim employer but prays for justice. Arslan told us that Mr. Ali was drunk when he arrived and verbally abused him and other members of his family. He demanded that they all return to work and threatened to kill them if they did not arrive the next day.
Arslan told him that they had left work and would not return to the factory again. At this, Mr. Ali shouted furiously:
“How dare you leave my factory without my permission?
“I’ll kill you if you stay out tomorrow and make sure to bring the girl.”
The whole family was terrified and when he left the family started discussing what they should do. As they were planning what to do, Rimsha who was very distressed passed out and collapsed on the floor. Her brother Arslan took her to Gujranwala district headquarters hospital where she received treatment and a diagnosis confirmed that she had been raped.
Back at the family home, Mumtaz Bibi called a close relative to ask her what she should do. He advised her to go to her local police station and report the rape and the threats.
That evening, Mumtaz Bibi went to Jandiala Baghwala police station with her relative and filed a complaint against Mr. Ali for raping his daughter.
The following morning, the culprit was arrested at his factory and registered as a First Information Report – FIR No. 994/22, on charges of rape under Section 376 of the Pakistan Penal Code.
376. Punishment for rape
(1) Whoever commits rape shall be punished with the death penalty or imprisonment for
a term which shall not be less than ten or more back, twenty-five years and shall also be
liable to a fine.
(2) When rape is committed by two or more persons in pursuit of the common intention of all,
each of these persons will be punished with the death penalty or life imprisonment. »
Despite the police arresting the culprit, the family is still traumatized and scared. Mumtaz Bibi left her rental house in Gujanranwala and moved to a remote location with her sister.
Unfortunately for Rimsha who was engaged, her fiancé has now broken off the engagement upon finding out about the rape incident. Rimsha is visibly traumatized and depressed.
Juliet Chowdhry, trustee of the British Asian Christian Association, said:
“Rimsha is a Christian in a country where her status makes her vulnerable.
“The fact that the rapist employer believed he could force Rimsha and her family back to work after such an ordeal is an illustration of the weakness of Christians.
“In 2014, a damning report by an Islamic NGO “Movement of Solidarity and Peace” reported that 700 Christian women are abducted, raped and forced into Islamic marriage each year. .
“This statistic does not take into account crimes of rape alone – which, if included, would paint an even more devastating picture.
“The Pakistani authorities must put in place better protection for Christian women within their existing structures, otherwise this social unrest will continue to grow. The family trusts God for their safety The family lives in a rented house in Gujranwala and Rimsha herself has been working in the glass crushing factory since last year. Four family members, Mumtaz Bibi, Rimsha, Arslan and Adnan’s wife each earned 8,000 rupees (£52) a week working in the glass factory. They worked hard for a pittance, but now unemployed, they ask for help and support to cover their daily expenses while they look for a new home and a job. They are also seeking the assistance of a lawyer. The cost of a solicitor would be around £1500,