Militants marrying Kashmiri girls on gunpoint

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Srinagar, Feb. 7 (ANI): Militants in Jammu and Kashmir have been forcing young girls to get married to them at gun-point only to abandon them later.

Such an instance came to light when sixteen-year-old Fatima Bi of Kishtwar district gathered courage to narrate her misfortune.

Fatima said she was abducted by Sher Khan, the then divisional commander of Harkat-ul-Jihad-al-Islami (HuJI), a Pakistan militant group four years ago.

Sher Khan and his associates tortured Fatima for eight days until she gave in to their demands and agreed to marry Hashim, a HuJI worker. She managed to run away and got a police complaint registered against Sher Khan, who was later arrested.

"There was this one Bilal, then another one named Ansari, there was a third man also, I don't remember his name. They used to keep me in a room and beat me with iron rods. They used to tell me that if I don't get married according to their will and wish, I would have to face dire consequences. I used to tell them I want to get married to a man I chose for myself. Sher Khan used to head these people," said Fatima.

Fatima said, many such horrendous abductions were still taking place, and authorities should put a check on them.

"The girl has given a very different story and she has given a nerve shaking story in terms that she was forcibly married to a person against her will when she was a minor girl. It was done by a Sher khan and his associates who were running a HuJI organisation in this area," said Haseeb Mughal, superintendent of police, Kishtawar district.

Shehnaz of Doda district, too was abducted just like Fatima.

"These militants they are dreadful people. They come to our village, sit and eat here, utter bad words for women, abuse them. But now the police is with us, I am sure we can also hit back at them," said Shehnaz.

Shehnaz felt that the future forced brides like her was dark. Many have to up bring their children alone, when their militant husbands get arrested. Society, too, sees them as an outcast.

Police officials say that the militants get married in order to mingle with the locals and avoid any suspicious eyes on them.

Though the authorities have been trying to tackle the issue but they express their helplessness, as such incidents come to light only when the forcibly married girls gather the strength to register a case. (ANI)

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