Acting on a tip, Pakistani police rescued 54 students from the Zakariya Madrassa (Islamic School) near Karachi, where they were kept like animals in the basement. Both the young and old students were chained, beaten and given very little food by those oh-so-pious clerics. Although the Telegraph says they ranged between the ages of 15 and 45, some of those kids looked much younger, and another news source claims some were as young as 7. The head cleric fled, but several others were arrested.
I wonder if those parents feel guilty, or if they even care. But since some of those madrassas provide free room and board and an education (if you can call learning Arabic, memorizing the Quran and studying Islam an education), I'm sure it's appealing to those who can't afford anything else. Not that everyone there was on a free ticket. One father sent his son to get help with the teen's behavioral problems and was paying $34.00 a month.
Although most of the younger kids were sent for religious education, some of the older 'students' were drug addicts brought there by relatives who saw it as a cheap drug rehab opportunity. Why they had the young kids living with the older druggies is unclear.
Since many of those madrassas are prime breeding ground for would-be-terrorists, police are investigating the possibility of a militant extremist connection.
Christianity, Judaism or Hinduism anyone?
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