London, May 27 : A Muslim woman has been charged with imprisoning her two daughters-in-law in her house. Naseebah Bibi (62) has been accused of falsely imprisoning Nagina Akhtar - who came to the UK after an arranged marriage in Pakistan - between January 1993 and 2006.
She is also charged with falsely imprisoning her second daughter-in-law Nisbah Akhtar in the same house between December 2005 and October 2007.
Nagina had allegedly been made to work at an industrial sewing machine for up to 15 hours a day. She was eventually allowed to leave the house to collect her son from school and staff alerted social services, the court was told.
The other daughter-in-law Nisbah escaped after the door was left unguarded when she went to the toilet.
She ran out of the house in Pringle Street, Blackburn, but not having been out for two years, didn't know which way to run. "She sought the help of another Asian female who called the police," The Mirror quoted prosecutor Claire Grant as telling the court.
Nisbah's hospital worker husband Nadeem Akhtar (30) is also charged with false imprisonment and assaulting her, but he denied both the charges.
Defence lawyer Basharat Ditta said his clients denied all the charges. "These are cultural issues within the community in which they live," Ditta said and added: "These issues were explored at the police station and at one stage it was indicated they would not be prosecuted. A subsequent review of that decision has led to their appearance in court."
The mother son duo is presently out on bail to appear before Preston Crown Court at a later date.