Mysterious disappearance of Christians in Youhanabad, community puts forth grievance

Karachi, PakistanUpdated: May 19, 2018, 10:17 AM IST
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Representative photo. Photograph:(Reuters)

Members of Christian community based out of Karachi in Pakistan met District Inspector on Friday to inform about mysterious disappearances of Christians and "raids" conducted in Youhanabad.

As reported by Dawn, residents of Youhanabad Christian colony, located in Gulshan-i-Iqbal Block 13-G, protested against disappearances of young Christian men.

Superintendent of Police Murtaza Bhutto moderated the discussions while Father Saleh Diego, Parish Priest at St Paul Parish, represented the community.

The members alleged that within a span of few weeks, 24 young Christian men were picked up by police on various pretexts or sometimes without any clarifications.

They further informed that some men, who appeared to be security officials, showed up wearing masks in the dead of the night, riding in cars without license plates.

The accused then broke down the doors across neighborhood and abducted the men.

The family members further alleged that these incidents started taking place since March 30 when six young men were taken away as part of the first incident.

On April 15, four youth were arrested and further 14 people disappeared.

Those abducted on May 8 are still missing.

As per a woman, whose husband is abducted, the alleged security officials had asked her husband's identity and demanded to see his identity card. They then assaulted the victim and dragged him away.

The victim was scheduled to appear for an interview at a call center when he was abducted.

Further, the family of another victim said on April 15 the alleged officers broke into their house using some sort of lock cutters.

Some arrested young men were blindfolded and transported to unknown areas.

One of them reported being tortured with electric shocks for three days in a row.

"They kept asking me to do exactly as they say. They constantly kept asking me about different people, encounters and weapons" victim informed.

He was taken away on April 15 on basis of a false case registered against him.

He was rescued by his family as they shared pictures of their abducted sons on social media platform, WhatsApp and managed to obtain bail for one of them.

Another victim who managed to return said he was being taken away by "officers".

The Christian community representatives further informed that the men raiding their homes bring a criminal named Shiraz with them who "identifies" the youngsters and abduct them.

Further, the victims are said to have no connection with any political organisation or community.

Some of the victims have been granted bail.

Christians filed an official complaint with IG Sindh and other notable figures. An FIR was also filed on behalf of the community.

They further requested the authorities to be informed in case the accused is arrested.

They had earlier reached out to relevant court as well regarding the matter but no action was said to be taken.