A 24-year-old Pakistani Christian woman was abducted on 12 May while walking with her 11-year-old brother. Marriam Mushtaq was suddenly snatched by four unidentified suspects in Bahar Colony, Lahore. For the past year, she had been studying adult education at Excel Educational Institution, and was on her way there with her brother Youhan at around 2pm when a white car pulled up next to them. A man with his face covered got out and dragged Marriam inside the car before it sped off.
Marriam tried to escape from the abductors, but then one of them placed a piece of cloth over her mouth and she became unconscious. The alarmed young brother began calling out for help. A few people gathered and boys on motorbikes started following the car; however, as it was speeding so fast, the perpetrators’ vehicle hit a young girl who was crossing the road. The victim suffered serious leg injuries. The local boys followed the car on their motorbikes until it vanished out of sight.
Marriam’s family visited the local police station to register a complaint, but the police initially did not respond. Only after the family and local Christians staged a protest, blocking the road for two hours, did the police agree to register a First Information Report against the unknown abductors.
Two days after Marriam’s mother filed a complaint with the police, she received a phone call from officers who stated that her daughter had not been kidnapped, but was married. A 32-year-old man named Muhammed Ali, who Marriam’s family claim is her kidnapper, attended the police station and presented a marriage certificate.
Members of the young woman’s family believe she would never voluntarily marry a militant Muslim, stressing their concerns that she has been forced into marriage and is now being held against her will.
Sources: Release International; Centre for Legal Aid, Assistance and Settlement (CLAAS)
- Please pray that Marriam will be safety reunited with her family. In the meantime, may God provide each one of them needed comfort and strength during this time of unwarranted separation.
- Pray this case will be taken seriously by the police and that they will do all the can for Marriam and her family. May the convicting power of the Holy Spirit come upon the abductors.
- Pray for the young girl who was seriously injured by the getaway car, praying that she will know the Lord’s presence, peace and healing.