Wednesday, August 2, 2017
Christian poisoned to death for seeking freedom from slavery contract
A Christian man who was sold into slavery was left to die from poisoning before his family home. Police refuse to investigate the death and have reported it as a suicide but family members report a history of mistreatment and have called for a murder inquiry.
In June 2015 Javed Masih (28 yrs) of Kamal Pur Panjchak in Faisalabad, needed a loan of 315,000 rupees (£2333) in order for him to buy a home for his family. To fund the purchase he agreed to a slavery contract with a man named Tajamal Jatt for two years that required him to plough fields, graze cattle, undertake all household chores and minor building repairs. The signed contract agreed to pay the loan which would be settled in full after two years servitude by Javed, who would also be paid a small payment of 7000 rupees (£51) per month.
Javed worked a minimum of 14 hours per day but was contracted to work 24 hours 7 days a week. This meant he was often called upon to undertake late night emergencies such as unblocking drains and receiving deliveries. Javed had been a regular member of the Presbyterian Church of Pakistan but was not allowed to attend church during his two years as a serf.
Javed suffered beatings and bullying from Tajamal and his siblings Muzamal and Bilal, however he only revealed this to his mother who was a solid foundation for her often beleaguered son. She would pray with Javed and provide counsel constantly reminding him of the need to put his faith in God. His mother recounted an incident that had demoralised Javed when a few months back as he was nearing the end of his contracted slavery, Javed spoke with Bilal the youngest of the Jutt brothers and told him of how he was looking forward to getting married after his contract was over.. In an alleged chilling response that struck fear into Javed, Bilal responded by saying:
Nevertheless, despite fears that he would not be permitted to quit his enslavement, Javed approached the Jutt brothers after his term of slavery was up and asked for permission to leave. His request seemed to stir up great animosity towards him with the brothers. Bilal was heard by other workers saying:
For this he was grabbed by the brothers, tied up, beaten and spat upon for a whole day. He had never told his family about this because he was both embarrassed and fearful of the repercussions on his family if they got involved. Other employees were made to see the brutal torture of Javed to instill a sense of fear amongst them.
With a heavy heart and totally demoralized Javed went back to work for the Jutt brothers. In his depressed and anxious state his productivity decreased and the family plotted to get rid of him.
On 17th July 2017, Javed was sent by bilal to buy some 'wheat pills' (Aluminium phosphide) used as a pesticide but also known to be a poison used for the purposes of murder and suicide.
When he returned Javed handed the pills over to Bilal but mysteriously despite being physically fit earlier in the day, Javed suddenly collapsed whilst working. His colleagues picked him up and took him to the Jutt brothers who told them to just let him rest for a while. However, on their insistence and refusal to work they took Javed to a local clinic. The senior clinician totally alarmed by the unconscious state of Javed asked the brothers to immediately take him to a local hospital. However the devious brothers dumped his body before his family home where only his widowed mother Shamim Bibi (58 yrs) and youngest brother Irfan (18 yrs) were present.
A dawn newspaper article described the symptoms caused by ingestion of the pills:
"The wheat pill exerts its harmful effects when swallowed, inhaled or when it comes in contact with skin or mucous membranes or body. In the presence of moisture, highly toxic phosphine gas is liberated, which interferes with protein synthesis and enzyme functioning mitochondria of heart and lungs. This results in cardiac arrest, circulatory collapse, and pulmonary edema and in fatal cases, hepatic necrosis.
Shamim asked Bilal to take her son to the hospital put was pushed away and spat at. She and her son nursed him as best they could but by the morning he had deteriorated. At 7am the following day Irfan called 1122 emergency services and an ambulance took Javed to Hospital. Javed's health was at its lowest ebb and he was declared dead by 9am suffering extreme pain.
Police initially refused to investigate the death and immediately recorded the death as a suicide. However British Pakistani Christian Association's Mehwish Bhatti visited Nishtabad Police Station and upon her insistence police agreed to undertake an investigation if evidence proved foul play. We have asked for the various wounds on the body of Javed to be taken into consideration for a potential murder inquiry.
Wilson Chowdhry, Chairman of the British Pakistani Christian Association, said:
Amjad Masih the elder brother of Javed Masih with his sister Sonia Masih - In red our officer Ambar Saroya.
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