Her right eye swollen, blood trickling down her cheek, she looks into the camera and says amidst sobs, “Look what he has done to me. Help me. He is beating me.”
This desperate plea on Twitter by Jasmine Sultana, a 33-year-old woman from Bengaluru, who now lives in Sharjah, went viral with thousands sharing it. Within hours, the Sharjah police detained her husband Mohammed Khizar Ulla. But in her house in Sharjah, Jasmine is scared that her husband would come back anytime and hurt her again.
Meanwhile, with her passport in his custody, she is in despair, hoping the Indian embassy will find a solution.
Jasmine Sultana has a masters’ degree in business administration and had worked as a human resource management professional in Bengaluru before she got married to Mohammed Khizar Ulla seven years ago.
“I was a divorcee before I got married to my husband. I worked for years in Bengaluru before I got married,” she tells TNM over the phone.
Jasmine got married to Mohammed in 2012 after a mutual acquaintance of both their families suggested a match. Mohammed had been working in Sharjah as a business development manager for TP Link and Jasmine joined him there after the wedding.
Speaking to TNM, Jasmine says that the abuse began a year after she got married. “I delivered my first baby a year after I got married. Until then, the abuse was only verbal. My husband would taunt me all the time as I was a divorcee. The physical abuse began a year after the wedding,” Jasmine says.
Hospitalised Multiple Times
Jasmine says she has been hospitalised multiple times in the last six years due to her husband's assault.
"“Every time my husband would beat me, I ended up getting hospitalised. He would call my parents and inform them. He would then play the victim and say he did it in a fit of rage and would not repeat it. Every time, he would be apologetic. I would decide to give him another chance. But things became horrible when he sent me to live with my in-laws in Bengaluru in 2017 when I was pregnant a second time,”" - Jasmine
Jasmine’s mother-in-law and sister-in-law live in a three-bedroom apartment in Bengaluru’s Jakkur. Her parents live in Shivajinagar. However, Jasmine alleges that she was never allowed to meet her parents even though she was in Bengaluru.
“My mother-in-law had taken away the jewellery that my father had given me during the wedding and all my valuables. She had also taken away my passport. She would lock the kitchen door and would give me one meal a day. Some days I would starve and survive only on water,” Jasmine says.
Refused to Let Her Leave the House
In November 2018, a few months after she delivered a baby boy, Jasmine decided to approach the Bengaluru police and file a complaint against her in-laws.
“That time, my husband told me that he would take me back to Sharjah and promised that the torture would never be repeated. I was under the impression that things would begin to change finally,” Jasmine says.
However, when the couple and their children reached Sharjah, Mohammed allegedly confiscated her valuables and passport and refused to let her leave the house.
Jasmine alleges that the beating became more frequent and more violent after December 2018 and that she had filed a complaint with the Sharjah police four times prior to the latest incident.
On Tuesday morning, when Jasmine returned home, Mohammed beat her again. But this time, Jasmine screamed loudly and ran outside the house and alerted her neighbours. She then uploaded the video she had shot on Sunday night on Twitter.
“I realised that my husband would kill me if I did not do something now. So I put the video on Twitter,” Jasmine says.
After the video went viral, the Indian Embassy in Dubai contacted Jasmine. According to Jasmine, embassy officials asked her to find her passport. “I don’t know where the passports are. My husband is not around now. I am sure the police will let him go. He will kill me if I don’t go back to India soon. I don’t know where the passports are and the embassy is not helping me. I want them to get me and my children new passports. I really want to come back to Bengaluru. I need help,” Jasmine says.
(Published in an arrangement with The News Minute.)
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