Imran Khan calls forced conversions in Pakistan 'un-Islamic', vows to protect worship places of minorities

Imran Khan calls forced conversions in Pakistan 'un-Islamic', vows to protect worship places of minorities

Pakistan PM Imran Khan on Monday termed the practice of forced conversions as “un-Islamic” and said there was no precedent in Islamic history for forcefully converting others.

Addressing an event in connection with National Minorities Day at the Aiwane-Sadr (President’s House) in Islamabad, Khan vowed to protect and develop worship places of minorities in Pakistan.

Khan said the Prophet himself had given minorities religious freedom and protected their places of worship.

“How can we then take it into our own hands to forcefully convert someone to Islam - either by marrying (non-Muslim) women (…) or on gunpoint or to (by threatening to) kill someone because of their religion?” he asked.

“All these things are un-Islamic. If God hadn’t given his messengers the power to impose their beliefs on someone, who are we (to do so)?” he asked.

Khan reiterated his commitment to build Pakistan on the model of ‘State of Medina’, ensuring rights to people, rule of law and provision of facilities to citizens at equal level. The PM said his government is committed to open the Kartarpur corridor for Sikh community on 550th birth anniversary of Guru Nanak (November 12).

Khan’s powerful message comes amidst growing cases of conversion of Hindu girls in Sindh province. The Human Rights Commission of Pakistan in its report in April raised concerns about incidents of forced conversions and marriages of Hindu and Christian girls, saying around 1,000 such cases were reported in Sindh province alone last year.

TNN