by Matt Agorist, March 5th, 2017
When defining slavery, it is important to note that this does not include those who work for low wages and are able to walk free. The Walk Free Foundation defines modern slavery as the deprivation of individual liberty for the purpose of exploitation. This broad definition includes many slavery-related practices such as human trafficking, forced labor, debt bondage, forced marriage, commercial sexual exploitation and the sale and exploitation of children.
Despite slavery being outlawed nationally, Pakistan has one of the highest prevalences in the world of modern slavery and, as the case of Iqbal Masih illustrates, there are some ominous forces working to keep it that way.
Masih’s story is as inspiring as it is tragic. At the age of five, Masih was sold into bondage for less than $7 USD. Masih’s mother needed a life-saving operation and so little Masih lost his freedom.
According to the Express Tribune, Bonded labor means that Masih was to work as a carpet weaver for the factory owner till the loan was paid back. His freedom remained a dream because his family’s financial burdens kept growing and they were unable to pay back the loan. Masih’s torture continued without any respite and any hope of the loan ever being repaid…