Forced Marriage


“Naseema was forced by her mother into marriage at the age of four to a 30-year-old neighbour. At her husband’s home, her father-in-law and 12 others in the family began torturing her. Her treatment included beatings and starvation, and she was forced to sleep outside in the cold with only a rug to protect her. Her abusers often used her as a human table, forcing her to lie on her stomach so they could cut their food on her bare back. At one point, her father-in-law locked her in a shed for two months and she was only allowed to leave once a day. The night before she escaped at the age of 12 in 2005, her father-in-law tied her hands together and poured scalding water over her head. She escaped the next day, fearing death at the hands of her husband’s family, and was found by a rickshaw driver who took her to the hospital for treatment; it took over one month for her to heal from the various injuries inflicted upon her. She is now in a shelter and attending school.”

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