• ‘Last Jew in Pakistan’ Beaten by Muslim Mob

    A Jewish activist in Pakistan was savagely beaten by a Muslim mob Wednesday – and then arrested and roughed up again by police • Full Story

    Arutz Sheva

     

    Fishel Benkhald – who is leading a one-man campaign to preserve the old Jewish cemetery in Pakistan’s largest city, Karachi – has been a vocal activist for minority rights in the country, which is overwhelmingly Sunni Muslim and where minorities such as Christians, Hindus and non-Sunni Muslims are routinely persecuted.

    Speaking to Arutz Sheva Thursday, Benkhald – the son of a Muslim father and a Jewish mother, but who identifies as Jewish – told how he had agreed to a face-to-face debate with a Muslim Pakistani man after a discussion on the topic of minority rights on Twitter.

    “I was debating over Twitter with a young educated Pakistani Muslim that non-Muslim Pakistanis should be allowed in theory to be elected president according to our constitution,” the discussion was purely theoretical, he noted, given that non-Muslims account for only around 3% of the Pakistani population.

    After a back-and-forth “I proposed to debate face to face,” said Benkhald. “He asked for me for my cell phone number and I gave it to him.”

    The two agreed to continue a friendly discussion at a restaurant in Karachi. But when he got there, Benkhald soon found himself ambushed.

    “I went there alone but he was with his friends, we started the debate in a normal discussion manner but soon it got heated up and cursing started.”

    At that point, a “mob” began to gather around him and two of the guys who were with him started manhandling me – I should have left at that time.

    “They started punching me and when I fell they started kicking my head. Someone also tried to snatch away my mobile.”

    Benkhald managed to tape part of the altercation, including the the assault. Arutz Sheva has opted not to include it due to the explicit and violent nature of parts.

    At that point police arrived, but instead of arresting his attackers, they detained Benkhald.

    “The police came and took me away, they didn’t take the other guys. The police asked me if I am from Israel or from any other country. I told them that I am a Pakistan and am Jewish from (my) mother’s side but registered as a Muslim in Pakistan.”

    Blindfolded and cuffed, he was then handed over to Pakistan’s Rangers paramilitary force, who continued questioning him about his ethnic origins, and going through his social media pages after demanding his passwords.

    “They beat me, but not much,” claims Benkhald, and accused him of being a spy for either Israel, the US or India.

    Eventually he was released after his brother intervened and bailed him out. The ordeal left Benkhald with a swollen eye and bruising.

    Bankhald admits that in retrospect his decision to agree to a personal debate in a back-alley restaurant was unwise, and says he will be scaling-down his online activism as well out of fears for his safety.

    He says he hopes to travel abroad “to a free country” to study Hebrew and Judaism someday, but that until then he will continue his activism in Pakistan as best he can.

    At the start of the twentieth century Pakistan was home to a small Jewish community based largely in Karachi, mainly Iraqi and Indian Jews who immigrated over the years.

    However since the country’s partition from India in 1947 and a rise in anti-Semitism that community has disappeared, leaving Benkhald as the self-declared “last Jew in Pakistan.”

    619

    Tags:

    Related Posts:

    *Only proper comments will be allowed
  • Event Calendar

  • Tuesday, Oct 27th, Wedding – Shlome Wolvovsky – CH & Rochel Leah Matusof – Madison, WI @ Oholei Torah
  • Thursday Oct 29th Wedding: Devorah Bennish – Detroit & Mordechai Rubin – London @ Royalty House, MI
  • Sunday, Oct 25th, Sholli Miller – Chicago, IL & Batya Korf – Miami Beach, FL @ Bais Rivka 310 Crown Street
  • Thursday, Oct 22 Wedding: Chaim Boruch Bar-Chaim – CH & Shoshana Pimentelli – CH/TX @ Oholei Torah
  • Thursday, Oct 22 L’Chaim: Sruli Finck – CH & Chaya Mangel – Dayton, OH @ Chovevei Torah 885 Eastern Parkway
  • Tuesday, Oct 20th Wedding: Dovid Kaminetzky – Melbourne, AU & Chaya Okunov – Crown Heights @ Oholei Torah
  • Monday Oct 19 L’Chaim: Ari (Aaron) Levertov – Crown Heights & Debby Rabinowicz – Sao Paulo, Brazil @ Choivevey Torah
  • Monday, Oct 19 2015 Wedding: Mendy Zippel – Salt Lake City, UT & Fraidy Shagalov – Crown Heights @ Oholei Torah
  • Sunday 18th Oct. L’Chaim: Chananya Niassoff – CH & Tzirl Brennan – CH @ Bais Rivkah Crown St
  • Sunday Oct 18th – Wedding: Mendy Edelman – Crown Heights & Sara Lozenik – Miami, FL @ Oholei Torah
  • Tehilim

  • Dov Chaim Ben Rivkah
  • Tzvi Hirsch Ben Guttel
  • Charna Alexandra bas Chana Esther
  • Ettie Bas Alte Miriam
  • Zissel Yehudis Bas Masha
  • Chaim Yosef Yitzchok Ben Sarah Elka
  • Devorah Bas Sarah
  • Boruch Ben Sarah
  • DovBer Ben Dina
  • Sender Ben Chaya Devorah
  • Lost and Found

  • Lost Men’s Heavy Black Winter Jacket Size Large in 770
  • Lost in 770 before Pesach, a black Bradley Jons long coat size 38R. No lining and no belt. Almost brand new! Please call zalman at 347-788-0749
  • Found black hats outside 770, behind the Hatzalah ambulance
  • lost – Chitas bearing a blessing to Shmuel from Sarge. (Sargent Zvi Fisher z..l.v) geulanow@012.net.il or +1-7869427070
  • LOST: in 770 a black Lenovo Intel core i5 laptop in a dark grey laptop bad together with a WD hard drive, if found please call Zalmy 347-788-0749
  • Found: Maroon Chitas
  • Found: Bag of Clothes
  • Found: Leather-Bound Pink Siddur
  • Lost: Box with Mini Shas from YSP
  • Lost: Rose Gold Bangle/Bracelet
  • Classifieds

  • Cook position for a local Mosad
  • Looking for a cook/kitchen manager
  • Administrator for a local Mosad Experience a must, and preferbiligual a bonus poconosmountains@gmail.com
  • Looking for a cook/kitchen manager Experience a must. poconosmountains@gmail.com
  • ‘Beis Mosiach’s’ to give away for free
  • Private Rooms for Men
  • Newly renovated Basement for rent
  • Judaica Store in Crown Heights is Looking to Hire
  • Looking for Work? Opportunity available, for a quick & efficient typist in Williamsburg. For more info: 201-800-1774
  • Lost in 770 Last Week: Transparant Bag of Tefillin, Rashi, R”T, Chitas – in black/grey 770 pouches