Killa Saifullah: Police detain over 70-year-old cleric for marrying a young girl

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Killa Saifullah: Police detain over 70-year-old cleric for marrying a young girl

Abdul Nafi Kakar, News Desk :

Police have detained over 70-year-old cleric for marrying a young girl in Balochistan’s Killa Saifullah district on Sunday. “We have detained the cleric and brought to the police station”, Jehanzaib Baloch, a senior administration official told Quetta Voice.

The news of the aged man’s marriage with the girl prompted the administration to pick up the cleric from his home on the eve of his wedding. People belonging to various walks of life strongly condemned marriage and demanded of the administration to act. The cleric identified as Mullah Abdul Qayoum Shah, a resident of Killa Saifullah bazar.

The bride has already arrived at Mullah’s home

“The girl already shifted to Mullah’s house”, Mr. Baloch informed. He however mentioned that the girl says she has married the cleric with her consent. “We are now recording her written statement”, the Assistant Commissioner said.

26-year-old Rahima is illiterate and belongs to a poor family in Killa Saifullah‘s Akhtarzai area, locals said. Police also took the father of the girl into custody and brought her to the police station.

Locals said the father used to take his daughter to the famous cleric for physiological treatment. The father had promised the girl’s marriage with Mullah if his daughter recovered. Now when she fully recovered, her marriage with the aged cleric is done.

Police staking the cleric to police station in Killa Saifullah bazar

Rights groups condemn such cultural practices

“Who will change these cultural practices where the woman has no say that with whom she is going to spend her life”, Afia Salam, a rights activist said. Existing laws have failed to ensure religious and constitutional rights of women, she said.

Allauddin Khilji, the Chief of Aurat Foundation (AF) Balochistan chapter has also expressed concern over the marriage and termed it as a violation of fundamental rights. “This is clear violation of law and religion”, Mr. Khilji stated.

Rights activists have also expressed concern over violence against women in Quetta and other parts of Balochistan. They demanded of the government to make sure implementation of laws that protect the fundamental and religious rights of women.

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