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Contract marriage racket busted in Hyderabad, two Sudanese held

Tuesday June 28, 2011 07:20:01 PM, IANS

Hyderabad: With the arrest of two Sudanese nationals, the Hyderabad police have busted another racket in contract marriages of poor Muslim girls to foreign nationals.

Police also arrested two 'qazis' (Islamic judges) who illegally performed the marriages and two pimps who would lure parents of poor and illiterate girls into such deals.

This is the second such racket busted by the police in three days.

In the first case Sunday, police arrested a qazi for forcing a minor girl to marry an Arab national.

Deputy Commissioner of Police (south zone) Vineet Brijlal told reporters Tuesday that in the latest case two Sudanese nationals, both staying in Hyderabad on student visas, were arrested following a complaint by a minor girl.

Identified as Mohammed Elshafie Mohammed Elhassan, 25, and Khaled Elrashid Khalid, 27, the two have been charged under various sections relating to sex with minor girl, kidnapping for forcible marriage and cheating.

Nousheen Begum, 16, told police that she was forcibly married to Elhassan on June 9 at the behest of her parents. At the time of the marriage performed by two qazis, she was shown as a major and her thumb impression was forcibly taken on blank bond papers so that they can later create "Qula nama" (or divorce executed by the wife in favour of husband).

Police arrested Elhassan on charges of having sex with a minor while his friend and roommate Khalid was taken into custody for misbehaving with her.

The Sudanese bridegroom told police that he entered into a contract marriage with the girl for enjoyment and had no plans of taking her to Sudan after completing his studies.

Two pimps, Zahra Begum and Ghousia Begum, both aged 40, were luring parents of poor minor Muslim girls into performing a marriage with foreigners. They had taken Rs.50,000 from Sudanese for his contract marriage.

Qazi Syed Shakeeluddin and his assistant Syed Abdul Malik were also arrested for performing the marriage of a minor girl with a foreigner and forcibly taking her signature.

The incident came to light two days after police in the old city arrested a qazi, Ali Abdullah Rafai, for forcing a minor to marry an Arab. He had offered Rs.4 lakh to a 17-year-old girl's aunt for the marriage. As the girl's aunt backtracked, the qazi and his assistant and son threatened to kill her and her niece.

The qazi allegedly performed several contract marriages between poor Muslim girls and the old and physically challenged Arabs or Indians of Arab origin.

The 53-year-old qazi was reportedly taking signatures of the brides and their parents on the divorce papers even before performing the marriages.

The police official attributed the increasing number of such cases to poverty and illiteracy and appealed to parents to be careful while performing marriages of their daughters with foreigners.





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