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Pakistani Christians demand justice for Christian girl raped by Muslim doctor

ICC Note

A Muslim medical doctor raped a Christian nurse in Pakistan . Now, victim’s family has been receiving threats and have come under the protection of police. Unfortunately, this is a harsh reality of life for Christians in Pakistan .

07/23/2010 Pakistan (enerpub)-A Christian nurse, Magdaline Ashraf, 22, was raped by Dr Jabbar Memon, a Muslim doctor, and his two friends at Room 96 of the Jinnah Postgraduate Medical Centre (JPMC, a state-run hospital) Doctors’ Mess in Karachi , the largest city of Pakistan , on July 13. According to Minorities Concern of Pakistan, the nurse was thrown out of the window. She was found unconscious and seriously injured in the lawn in the JPMC residential area.

Christian community and civil society organizations protested against the incident and demanded for justice with the victim.

On July 21, Magdaline Ashraf, who belongs to a poor family, recorded her statement before the police. According to the Christian nurse, there were two more men in the room, while a nurse named Fatima and a driver were also involved in the crime. She said in the room there were bottles of alcohol and Dr Memon was drunk.

Dr. Memon is a medico-legal officer and has had a notorious reputation for harassing nurses at the hospital. It’s devastating to learn that the victim had been complaining about being harassed by Memon long before the assault took place and she wasn’t the only one. But their pleas fell on deaf ears. Ironically, the victim’s family continues to receive threats and have requested for police protection.

As the news spread, the nurses and paramedical staff went on strike and they also organised protest march. For the over 350 nurses working in ward 24 of JPMC, harassment is not a new phenomenon but it was this victim’s gang-rape which compelled them to protest and go on strike in solidarity. As a result of strong protest, Dr. Memon was sacked after the medico-legal report proved him guilty.

Christian nurses face increased social discrimination because of their faith and are easy target of sexual assaults because of their vulnerability.

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