Nissar Hussain, a British man who converted from Islam to Christianity in 1996, has written a letter to his local MP recounting some of the long catalogue of violence, abuse and other attacks that he has suffered at the hands of some Muslims in the area of Bradford where he lives. Recently Nissar and his wife, Kubra, who have six children, have each had false allegations against them brought to the police for separate “offences” resulting in each of them being held at the police station for hours. Their car has been maliciously damaged four times, making it almost impossible for the family to meet the repair and insurance costs. Yet despite appealing to local authorities and organisations for support, Mr Hussain has struggled to find support and help. Beleaguered by the persistent attacks, he feels that this persecution is similar to that which Christians in Pakistan are enduring under the country’s blasphemy laws. The letter below (dated 15 May) from Mr Hussain to his MP describes the torment his family has endured from the local Muslim community because he and his wife decided to leave Islam and follow Christ. No response has been given to his letter to date.
Dear Naseem Shah MP,
Can I congratulate you on behalf of myself and family on your stunning victory and we can't express our delight as our newly elected MP for the Ward of Manningham and wish you every success for the future. On a serious note can I express our utter misery and dire situation as Christian converts from a Mirpuri/Muslim* background since 1996.
We were forced out of our previous home after over several years of suffering as converts and in short my family and I endured ‘hell’ by my fellow Pakistani young men in the form of persecution which entailed assault, daily intimidation, criminal damage to property: smashing house windows and also 3 vehicles written off whilst the community looked on and even endorsed this. One of vehicles was torched outside my home. Despite witnessing another vehicle being rammed deliberately by a man who I knew, the Police did not even take a statement never mind an arrest. Finally after being threatened to be burnt out of my home these young men deliberately set the neighbours’ house (which was vacant) on fire in the hopes that our house would catch fire. When I had reported it to Police prior to this happening the Police sergeant's response was: "Stop trying to be a crusader and move out!" In short the Police had wilfully failed us so as not to be labelled racists or seem to cause the Muslim community offence at our suffering and expense.
After being forced to move out in June 2006 we settled in St Paul's Rd and set about rebuilding our lives, which was going well and had no issues and forged good relations with neighbours until we contributed in a Dispatches documentary called ‘Unholy War’ highlighting the plight of converts from Islam to Christianity in September 2008. Then our problems began, largely posed by the A. family who have been engaged on a campaign to drive us out our home given their bigoted attitude and thoroughly unscrupulous conduct and since last July they have embarked upon criminal damage to my vehicle to the point I have now had my vehicle windscreens smashed for the fourth occasion. The most recent incident occurred on 24 April when I had my vehicle smashed in the early hours of the morning and cannot express the financial impact also as I have to wait 3 weeks at a time for the glass to be ordered from the States as my vehicle is American. And again as in our previous experience the Pakistani community has looked on at our suffering and turned a blind eye whilst others have been openly hostile, while they enjoy freedom and liberty religious or otherwise whilst imposing their will rule and reign upon us and we are treated as second class citizens.
As a result of the latest criminal damage, and after weeks of having no car until it was repaired, I took the liberty of parking my vehicle away from outside my home for peace of mind, as given the misery over the last several years I have been diagnosed with PTSD and my wife and family also suffer stress and anxiety. When I went this morning to get my car I was mortified to discover that my car has been smashed deliberately yet again. Clearly we cannot go on living like this; … our lives have been sabotaged, we fear for our safety and suffer anxiety daily, not to mention the financial costs to all of this wanton criminal damage.
I cannot express in words the Police failure over the years which has led to our suffering and have no confidence in them whatsoever and am desperate for your help.