EXCLUSIVE: Love Story and Escape From Pakistan

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A young woman found guilty of blasphemy in Pakistan for allegedly sitting on and spitting on a copy of the Quran escaped to an unnamed Middle Eastern country while on bail. Walaiha Irafat and her husband were attacked and threatened in January while she out on bail. Shortly afterwards she was brutally raped by four people, her husband told Clarion Project. 

Since then she managed to flee the country.

Her husband, M Aman Ullah, is currently in hiding and fears for his life in Pakistan.

They met in September 2012 shortly after she was initially arrested after a neighbor accused her of sitting on the Quran and spitting on it. She was accused of tearing pages of the Quran and making derogatory remarks about Allah

She was initially denied bail during the trial and served 43 months in prison, during which time she was in solitary confinement for two years, according to her husband.

She was not convicted and is still on trial, merely released on bail.   

The 1st time I met her was in court and after hearing her story and her isolation I wanted to help her,” Ullah told Clarion Project. “I then went to jail to meet her with her friend. I hired a lawyer after that first meeting. From October 2012 I began helping her with her case and with money for basic necessities, since no one else was doing so.”

After a year in prison she began suffering from mental problems, which her husband says were caused by her confinement. An official psychiatric tribunal affirmed she suffered from “mood disorder” and was in need of “drugs treatment and psychotherapy.”

In October 2013, she attempted suicide and was moved to the Punjabi Institute of Mental Health. Since there was no one in the hospital to assist her, Ullah rushed to her side.

She was there for three to four days and I assisted her and listened to her whole story and realized I was in love with her,” Ullah said.

She was finally released on bail in 2015 after the case went to the Supreme Court of Pakistan. She married Ullah on October 28, 2015.

Subsequently,  she was subjected to a violent gang rape. She was tricked into a room she thought was a hostel room with three men identified as “Adnan” and two of his friends. The owner of the guest house then arrived but Adnan invited him to rape her as well, so he joined in.

The men who raped her were close friends of the people who originally accused her of blasphemy, Ullah said. 

The lawyer conducting her trial, Saif ul Malook, is the same lawyer conducting the case of Asia Bibi, a Christian woman accused of blasphemy. That case has become internationally famous and her final hearing is today, October 13, 2016. 

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Meira Svirsky

Meira Svirsky is the editor of ClarionProject.org