Sunday, January 24, 2021

Indian, Pakistani Ministers Engage In ‘Twitter Spat’ on Minority Rights

Pakistani Information & Broadcasting Minister Fawad Chaudhry got into a heated spat with Indian External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj on a government’s responsibility to protect minorities within its borders.

It started with Swaraj seeking a report from the Indian High Commissioner in Pakistan Ajay Biseria, on a recent forceful conversion case in Sindh. “I have asked Indian High Commissioner in Pakistan to send a report on this,” she tweeted while linking news story.

Fawad responded to the Indian minister’s tweet by reminding her of the state of Muslims in India under the Narendra Modi-led government.

“Ma’am, it is Pakistan’s internal issue. Rest assured it is not Modi’s India where minorities are subjugated. It is Imran Khan’s Naya Pakistan where the white colour of our flag is equally dear to us.”

The information minister expressed hope that the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government will “act with the same diligence when it comes to the rights of Indian minorities.”

Reportedly, two teenage Hindu girls were allegedly kidnapped and forced to convert to Islam before being married to Muslim men in Sindh. The incident came to light when a video of the girls’ father and brother surfaced online. The men said that the teenagers were abducted and forced into conversion and marriage. However, another video circulating online showed the girls stating that they accepted Islam of their own free will.

Reports emerged that the teenagers had been moved to Punjabi city of Rahim Yar Khan from Ghotki, Sindh.

Earlier today, Prime Minister Imran Khan took notice of the situation and directed Sindh and Punjab governments to investigate the matter and recover the girls. He further told Sindh Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah to ensure concrete steps were taken against forceful conversions.

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