Christian Girl freed by Police from Slavery to Muslim Woman
By Michael Ireland, Chief Correspondent, ASSIST News Service, January 2, 2009
PAKISTAN (ANS) -- Pakistani Christians gained a rare legal victory when a local court ordered police to secure the release of a Christian teenage girl who had been abducted by her former employer.
The Washington-DC based human rights group, International Christian Concern (ICC) www.persecution.org has learned that Police carried the order out on December 13, successfully returning Nousheen Bibi to her parents after three months as a hostage to her former employer, a Muslim woman from Shahzad Park town in Sargodha, Pakistan.
"Surprisingly, Asmat did not encounter any opposition at court. Mehnaz thought she could get away with enslaving the Christian girl because Christians in Pakistan are considered to be very weak both financially and socially."
Nousheen Bibi with her parents
ICC says that Nousheen's mother, Asmat Bibi, had submitted a case in court against the Muslim woman, Mehnaz Begum, for keeping her daughter as a maidservant in her home two months beyond their agreement.
An ICC media release says: "The two women had initially agreed to have Nousheen work for one month as a maid at Mehnaz's house in exchange for a set payment. However, Mehnaz refused to either pay Nousheen for her services or allow her to return home when the month was over.
ICC explains, however, the local judge ordered police to visit Mehnaz and recover Nousheen at Asmat's request. Nousheen was in good health despite the intense mental stress she experienced, and she had no evident marks of any physical violence.
Samuel Wallace, ICC's Regional Manager for South Asia, said, "Asmat Bibi reminds me of the parable Jesus told of the persistent widow and the unjust judge. In a country where Christians are usually unable to defend themselves against egregious crimes, Asmat had the courage to petition the court for her daughter. May we have the same boldness and trust in God for those we love."