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Islam and Human Rights ( 31 Oct 2012, NewAgeIslam.Com)

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From Temple to Shrine: Sufi centre with a madrasa involved in a high number of forced conversions of Hindu girls



October 31, 2012

In September of this year, got a chance to visit the shrines and temples of Reharki — a city located in the Ghotki District of upper Sindh, which is home to a sizable Muslim community, as well as a Hindu minority.

The Sant Satram Das Temple, is overlooked by multiple statues of Hindu deities and is located close to the Bharchundi Sharif Shrine.

The shrine is a Sufi centre with a madrasa that has been mentioned in the media in connection with a high number of alleged forced conversions of members from the Hindu community in the area, the most notable of which is the Rinkle Kumari case.

The administrators of the madrasa, including the local MNA Mian Abdul Haq also known as “Mian Mitho” maintain that the conversions are not forced, but a result of the individual’s own choice and convertees approach the shrine as a safe haven in cases where their family doesn’t approve of their conversion.

We got a chance to speak to members of the Hindu Community as well as a Hindu girl, Kiran Kumari, who maintained that she willingly converted to Islam on Eid ul Fitr, while others contend that her conversion was not consensual.

In our visit, we spoke to people on both sides of the issue in order to get a clearer picture of the story.

- Video by Zehra Naqvi and Salman Haqqi/