A maulvi, Aijaz Sheikh, has been accused of raping minor boys in Kashmir under the pretext of summoning jinns to drive away the “evil eye”.
A victim shared their appalling incidents with Mail Today. It is shocking, to say the least. This is what he said,
I was 11-year-old when my uncle took me to Aijaz Sheikh. I was sexually abused several times. One night, there were around 10-11 children in the age group of 11 to 14 at his house. He forced us to perform sexual acts from evening until next morning. He used to watch us and would then decide to rape the most attractive boys present there. He was so obsessed with sexual exploitation that he would actually rape kids in front of each other in different positions.
The victim feared he might have contracted STDs. He continues his horrific tale,
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Once, he sexually abused me to the extent that I fell down on the ground and was badly hurt. I was so innocent that I asked myself what if I get pregnant? What am I going to tell my parents if that happens? For years to come, I feared that I might have also contracted some STDs. Having come out against the accused makes me feel scared for my life. The alleged victims, some of whom are in their teenage now, still can’t forget the nightmares.I was forced to drop out from school as I had to oblige the Peer’s demands. I miss school. Wish I had never gone there. I want to go back to school and finish my studies.
After this account, Mail Today asked Sheikh for his side of the story. In his defence, he said,
I am innocent. You do not even have to trust me; you can ask anyone in the village and you will get the idea of the reputation I hold.
The psychologist who is counselling some of the rape survivors said that these victims have shown symptoms of depression, anxiety, guilt and fear.