A Hindu teenager allegedly kidnapped by a much older Muslim man and rescued from Gujarat has revealed she was forced by the man to perform namaz and read the Quran.
In an audio of the girl’s conversation with an NGO counsellor that was accessed by a Swarajya correspondent she can be heard saying Sohidul Rehman forced her to recite ayats in Arabic from the Quran and also forced her to perform the namaz.
She also added they didn’t have a formal nikah at a mosque and that Rehman called a man home and in his presence read the nikahnama and made her repeat the same.
Rehman reportedly told the girl he was her husband going forward and repeatedly entered into a physical relation with her.
The 14-year-old girl, a resident of Bengal’s South 24 Parganas, went missing on October 6 and her an FIR was lodged at Jibantala police station the next day.
New Delhi-based Mission Mukti Morcha learnt about the case on October 11 and took it up with higher officials of Bengal police. After failing to get much headway, the NGO sought the intervention of National Commission for Protection of Child Rights.
Eventually, the Anti-Human Trafficking Unit (AHTU) of West Bengal’s Criminal Investigation Department took up the case.
Only on November 11 after obtaining Rehman’s location, an AHTU team left for Rajkot in Gujarat. The girl was rescued the next day.
The 28-year-old kidnapper, who is already married, has been arrested on kidnapping charges. If the girl testifies to sexual assault before a magistrate and medical reports confirm the same, Rehman would be additionally booked under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act.
The girl is currently in the custody of Bengal CID and is likely to be returned to her parents this week.