Using the sensitive nature of the situation during pandemic, Islamists in Pakistan are indulging in mass conversions. According to an activist Rahat Austin, as many as 171 Hindus in Pakistan’s Sindh province were converted to Islam on Sunday.
The madarsa Ahsan-ul-Taleem, Sangha in the Sindh province conducted the religious ceremony for mass conversions. A former member of Islamic Ideology Council Noor Ahmad Tashar carried out the conversion, Austin claimed.
The targets of conversion belonged to the Hindu Bhil community, an extremely marginalised, socio-economically backward community in Pakistan, and were converted based on several allurements.
Earlier in June, over a hundred Hindus were converted to Islam in Badin district of Sindh province. Reportedly, all idols of Hindu gods kept in a local temple were destroyed and the premises was converted into a mosque.
During the spread of the pandemic, several media outlets reported the exclusion of the marginalised Hindu communities from the benefits in the Islamic countries of the subcontinent, and Islamists using the opportunity to convert them out of their faith.
A NYT report said that the Hindus in Pakistan, “facing discrimination and a virus-ravaged economy, are essentially converting to survive”.
An April 2020 TOI report claimed that Hindus gathered in Karachi city to receive rations from the government were sent back saying that the rations were only meant for Muslims.
A Pakistani activist Amjad Ayub Mirza was quoted as saying by an ANI report that the Hindus in Pakistan were facing serious food crisis and Indian government ought to send food supplied to them via Rajasthan.
A newspaper report on April 4, 2020 called out a local political leader In Bangladesh’s Sylhet for religious discrimination against Hindus while distributing the relief aid. An IANS report claimed that the “assaults on the Hindu community in different parts of Bangladesh has spiralled at an alarming rate”.