ISLAMABAD : The Supreme Court has directed the
inspector general of Punjab police to submit a report into
the alleged brainwashing of a youth by a “faith healer” in
Chief Justice of Pakistan Mian Saqib Nisar took notice of
the case on an application filed by Mohammad Salman
Shakeel’s parents in the Human Rights Cell of the Supreme
Qazi Shakeeluddin stated in the application that a pir
(faith healer) named Sufi Khurram and his disciple Rizwan
had brainwashed his son, leading to him abandoning his
He urged the court to order authorities to recover his son
and take action against Sufi Khurram and Rizwan as per the
Taking notice of the application, the director of SC’s Human
Rights Cell wrote a letter to IG Punjab earlier this week,
directing him to submit a report of the case within 15 days.
According to the father, Salman was introduced to Sufi
Khurram by a friend he met at the local mosque while
studying for his BCom degree. Salman started spending his
evenings and eventually staying over at Sufi Khurram’s dera
(camp), he said.
A year later, in an apparent first sign of his
radicalisation, Salman started wearing shalwar kameez to
college and grew out his hair.
Salman then took admission in the M.A. programme at the
University of Central Punjab, only to quit less than a month
later citing the “presence of female students” in his class.
Salman devoted his next five years in service of Sufi
Khurram, forgoing his studies and prospects of a job. He
eventually started living away and would visit his family
home for only a few hours every day.
Shakeeluddin alleged that Sufi Khurram had managed to
separate several young men from their families and was
exploiting them for his ‘faith healing’ business.
Later, although Salman moved with his family to Islamabad
after reportedly developing differences with the faith
healer, he soon returned to Lahore upon being called
repeatedly by Sufi Khurram.
The father alleged that the faith healer had been holding
his son “hostage” for past 10 years and instilled in him
hatred against various sects.
He urged authorities to recover his son and take action
against groups spreading sectarianism.
Originally published by INP