Thursday, February 11, 2010

A Bad "Bishop"

ISLAMABAD: The Supreme Court refused on Wednesday to accept a pre-arrest bail petition moved jointly by a bishop of the Karachi Diocese and a Christian woman for their alleged involvement in the stripping and dishonouring of the administrator of Brenton Carey Girls Hostel in 2004.

A three-judge bench, headed by Chief Justice Iftikhar Mohammad Chaudhry and comprising Justice Chaudhry Ijaz Ahmed and Justice Ghulam Rabbani, issued a notice to the state through the advocate general of Sindh with an observation that the woman (administrator of the hostel) had perhaps been disgraced.

Advocate Tariq Mehmood, representing the petitioners, denied that the administrator was ever disgraced and requested the court to accept the bail. He said the Sindh High Court had cancelled the bail five years after it had been issued. The petition was filed by Right Reverend Sadiq Daniel, Bishop of Karachi Diocese, Shahzer Shamoon, then secretary to the Sindh government, priest George Bhatti and Mrs Calventina Burdge.

The SHC had cancelled the bail because of their role in stripping the administrator in public, hitting sensitive parts of her body and biting shoulder to force her to sign certain documents.

According to the high court order, the victim said that Bishop Daniel who lived in the Trinity Church compound wanted to terminate her service as administrator of the hostel located on the Fatima Jinnah Road in Karachi.

The accused and a number of his accomplices had forcibly entered the hostel and slapped and beat her with kicks and fists. They also beat up girls in the hostel, tore their clothes and used abusive language.

They later dragged the administrator from the hostel’s prayer room to the playground where she was stripped.

The petitioners accused the administrator (Mrs Ghazala Shafiq) of disgracing them and tarnishing their reputation by registering the case with ulterior motive.

They said that rigging in 1995 and then in 1997 elections for the office of the Bishop of Karachi Diocese had caused enmity between rival groups.
They alleged that the administrator was an accomplice of a defeated candidate who nominated them in the FIR for taking a mala fide advantage in the proceedings then pending before the high court.

The petitioners accused the administrator of being involved in some objectionable activities, such as coercing girls of the hostel to perform dances at inappropriate events, forcing them to participate in indecent films and exposing them to immoral activities.

In fact, they said, when Mrs Burdge had gone to the hostel to serve the administrator with her suspension orders, she was attacked. Even Naureen, a woman constable who accompanied Mrs Burdge and was pregnant, had a miscarriage because of intense beating, the petitioners said.

From here.

NOTE:  Sadiq Daniel is not the rightful Anglican bishop of Karachi.  He took this position away from the rightful Bishop of Karachi (a friend of mine) by political manipulation and for personal gain. Read more here.

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