Our daughters and sisters are our proud; By Farrukh Harrison Saif
The miserable lives of Pakistani Christian asylum seekers in Thailand are no stranger to the international community. Since last 2 years Farrukh Saif Foundation and many other organizations and individuals have been struggling for the resettlement of Pakistani Christians to the third safe nations where they can enjoy religious freedom and equal rights.
Yesterday we found news on internet with the title “Pakistani Christian Refugees, Children jailed in Deplorable Conditions, Waiting for UN to Act”. Godfrey Yogarajah (The executive director of “World Evangelical Alliance Religious Liberty Commission) who visited Bangkok first time to see the situation Pakistani Christian are living in, where he was interviewed by a journalist named “Stoyan Zaimov” and this interview was later posted on “Christian Post”. The article makes you realize that at first Godfrey Yogarajah pretends to be a man who worries about his community, feels pain for them and wants to help them somehow. But then at the second stage of his interview he starts defaming and attacking the dignity and character of Pakistani Christian girls in Thailand saying that; “many teenage Pakistani Christian girls resorted to acting in Pornographic movies, and are also involved in commercial sex”.
Did he deliver this statement for spreading awareness of Pakistani Christian´s problems to the international community or was it a planned act for damaging the reputation of Pakistani Christians in Thailand? Whereas when Brother Farrukh Saif jumped into the matter and asked him for the proofs justifying his statement then he suddenly changed his stance and denied that he ever delivered such kind of statement to any journalist. But knowing that Stoyan is a well-known and credible journalist who was never part of any controversy and has always published what he has been informed, we cannot trust on Godfrey´s words and we believe that it was a deliberate action
Girls are considered the honor of the families in Pakistani culture, and any issue regarding the honor of the family is taken very seriously and sensitively in our society. But how easy it was for Godfrey Yogarajah to attack that honor although he himself is an Asian and he knows very well how grave it is in Asian culture to allege a girl to be part of commercial sex.
Yes, it is true that Pakistani Christians in Thailand are forced to live under deplorable conditions, they are ignored and abandoned by UNHCR Bangkok, above all the lack of food & medical treatment, joblessness and poverty have shattered the peace of their lives and their future plans. But yet Pakistani Christian girls in Bangkok protect themselves from all kinds of evil intentions. This propaganda cannot instigate us against our Christian daughters and sisters who strictly stay within the boundaries set by their families, culture and religion. They are our proud and we fully trust them.
It is a well-known fact that Pakistani Christians in Bangkok do not leave their homes due to the fear of being caught by immigration, then how is it possible for Pakistani teenagers to move freely and get involved in such kind of activities?
Although after the harsh intervention of brother Farrukh Harrison Saif the news from Christian Post was removed but by then it was already circulated on internet and re posted on several websites including “Christians in Pakistan” where the news is still active and keeps damaging the reputation of our Christian daughters and sisters in Thailand.
Instead of helping the persecuted Church Godfrey showed the immature attitude and because of his insane declaration the entire Pakistani Christian community feels hurt and all the Pakistani Christian teenager girls in Bangkok will be seen as prostitutes.
Farrukh Harrison Saif, the team of Farrukh Saif Foundation and the entire Pakistani Christian asylum seeker community condemn Godfrey´s statement. We shall keep working practically for our people on the ground to protect them and to get them their rights and suggest you to be careful of people who call themselves men of God but they do nothing else except damaging your cause.
Farrukh Saif Foundation