Former Afghan policewoman recounts Taliban attack on her

Former Afghan policewoman recounts Taliban attack on herFormer Afghan policewoman recounts Taliban attack on her

The Taliban have not changed. They’re the same as what they were 20 years ago,” said Khatera Hashmi, a former Afghan policewoman. Her face is a living testimony to the barbaric practices of the Taliban: while she was pregnant, Khatera Hashmi was abducted by the hardline insurgent group and tortured. She was shot multiple times and her eyes were gouged out.

“For the Taliban, the greatest sin a woman can commit is to step outside her home to work. What happened with me is also happening to many other women right now. But they can’t come out and say it because they are afraid,” Khatera Hashmi said during an exclusive conversation with India Today TV.

Hashmi is now living in India, but recounting her harrowing experiences in her home country still leaves her trembling and on the verge of tears. In the name of Islam, the Taliban have terrorised the people of Afghanistan, she said.

“One day when I was returning from work, three Talibs were waiting near my home. They attacked me, stabbed me eight to ten times with knives. They shot a gun at me, I lost consciousness when a bullet hit by head. Not satisfied with that, they gouged out my eyes with their knives,” detailed Hashmi.

‘HAVE BECOME A LIVING CORPSE’

Following the assault, she was shifted to a hospital in Kabul where doctors saved her life. However, there was nothing they could do about her eyesight, which is gone forever.

“I have become a living corpse. I’m breathing but every day of my life is a struggle, doing even the simplest things is a challenge for me,” she said.

While she was in India for advanced medical treatment, the situation started deteriorating in Afghanistan. After a weeks-long offensive by the Taliban, the Afghan government collapsed and the militant outfit seized control in the country.

‘TALIBAN THREATENING MY CHILDREN’

Hashima said she is worried about her children who are in Afghanistan, but she is unable to return home because the Taliban are looking for her after finding out that she is alive.

“The last time I spoke to my children was nine or ten days ago. They said the Taliban come knocking on their doors, be it day or night, asking when my husband and I will return. The Taliban threatened them saying ‘we will do anything to you if your parents don’t come back’. I haven’t spoken to my children since then. Maybe they left home and went into hiding. I don’t know if they’re dead or alive,” she said, wiping tears from her face.

During her time serving as a police officer, Khatera Hashmi witnessed untold atrocities committed against women by the Taliban. She used to visit these women in their homes and wanted to fight on their behalf, which was not liked by the insurgents, she said. Given their track record, she does not believe in the Taliban’s promises of moderation and more rights for women.

Former Afghan policewoman recounts Taliban attack on her