Christian Pakistani family's 14-year old daughter kidnapped at gunpoint

Published 28 April 2017  |  
BPCA
Maria, (circled) was reportedly kidnapped from her family's home by a group of armed robbers.

A Christian Pakistani family have reported that their 14-year old daughter was abducted during an armed robbery of the family's home.

Maria Bibi, 14, was reportedly taken from her family at 3am on 15 April in Gaggo Mandi in the Vehari district of Punjab, Pakistan.

The home of her mother, Bushra Bibi, 46, and three younger siblings was reportedly attacked by three men who scaled the walls of the home and broke into the property.

The armed men reportedly waved their guns at the family and told them to kneel while they looted the property. The home was reportedly robbed of 13,000 rupees (£102) and gold jewellery valued at 50,000 rupees (£400). The family say that the men then took Maria with them, said the family would not see Maria again and ordered them not to tell the police or they would be killed.

Other accomplices were reportedly heard outside, shouting 'have you got the girl yet?'

Maria's father died six years ago due to a heart attack, leaving Bushra alone to look after Maria and her siblings aged 11, 12 and 13. Maria worked as a cleaner.

The British Pakistani Christian Association (BCPA) say the local police have been slow in reacting to the kidnapping.

Wilson Chowdhry, chairman of the BPCA, said: 'Until we got involved police were refusing to register a First Incident Report, this deplorable insouciance towards kidnap, rape and forced marriage of vulnerable Christian girls, is based on an Islamic bias within police authorities.

BPCA
Maria's home that was reportedly besieged by armed kidnappers.

'The regular failure by police to react to such cases has created an impunity which leads to bold acts of violence towards Christians and other minorities.

'We are in touch with the Government of Pakistan through the High Commission and have alerted them to this incident. I am sure that a more concerted response will be enacted by the Police and we have been assured of this.'

The BPCA have set up a charity appeal to raise the required funds (£600) for a lawyer to support Maria's family, and advocate should a legal battle ensue.

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