Bent over a bunch of ice-cream sticks with which he plays at Chotay Taray Foundation – a childcare centre where he is being taken care of since yesterday, Mubashir Hussain Shah, the 9-year-old boy from Pakistan who had been badly beaten by his father and step mother, asked this reporter in a quiet voice 'Mere piyo nu kotiya, ki ni kotiya' (Did the police beat my father up or no). When he heard that his father has been arrested, Mubashir smiles and says, 'Hun Pata Chalai ga' (Now, he will understand).
The doctors have confirmed since that the boy was assaulted and had injury marks on thighs, shoulder, and face, behind the ears, neck and eyes.
Mubashir's father, Bashir Hussain Shah had gone over to Pakistan in 1990, leaving behind his wife, who was from Rajouri, and one son. Bashir married a Pakistani girl and had two children with her – Mubashir and her sister. The wife died, and Bashir re-married another girl from Pakistan and had two children with her.
In 2016, Bashir came back from Pakistan and settled in Malangam, Bandipora where his three brothers and mother are living separately.
"Bashir doesn't beat his children that he has from the third wife, He is fine with them, and he only beats his children from the second wife – Mubashir and his sister. He beats him under the influence of his wife, "said a relative of Mubashir. Adding: "Once they beat Mubashir so much that he jumped from the house and broke his chin."
Bashir's behaviour towards his son and daughter was bad in Pakistan also. Mubashir and his sister would live with their grandparents in Pakistan. "They didn't want to come to Kashmir, they were forced by Bashir. In fact, the police in Pakistan had also warned Bashir not to beat them up and force them to go to Kashmir," the relative said.
Mubashir, who is now at Chotay Taray, wants her step mother and father to be punished for the act. He wants her sister to be rescued, for he thinks they might kill her. "They should be put behind bars, for they tortured me and my sister. I don't want to go back to Bandipora, they will kill us," said Mubashir.
The Bandipora police have rescued the girl and have kept her in safe custody. The police has also lodged an FIR against the father and arrested him.
Javaad Iqbal, Member Child Welfare Committee (CWC's) Bandipora said, "The police had already rescued the girl. She is a 6th standard student and had an examination today; they escorted her to school also. Now the girl will stay at one of our female CWC's place for the night and then we will approach the CWC's Srinagar and put the girl in a child care home."