Photocredit: New Straits Times
This pretty and happy girl is Nurin. She is eight years old and has two sisters. On August 20th this year, she went to the night market which was just a 100 m from her home. She disappeared.
For the last month, her parents have left no stone unturned in their efforts to find her. In fact, her case has galvanised people from all segments of the community to do what they can; from helping to distribute posters of the missing child to raising money as rewards for information leading to her being found.
As I mentioned in my previous post, last Monday a body of a young child was found stuffed in a sports bag that had been left in a stairwell. The police called Nurin’s parents to identify the body. To everyone’s relief, Nurin’s father emerged from the morgue to announce that the dead girl was not his daughter and asked that efforts to find Nurin continue unabated. The girl in the morgue remained unidentified and unclaimed.
This sad story took an unexpected twist with a nasty sting in its tail. Yesterday, the police announced that DNA tests had confirmed that the dead girl was indeed Nurin. The parents could not accept the news. My heart broke as I read his reported statement in the newspapers, “I am Nurin’s father…I know my daughter better than anyone else. My heart is saying the body is not my daughter.”
Sadly, the DNA evidence seems to be quite conclusive. Finally, today, the parents agreed to receive the body for burial. Pictures were circulated in the newspapers of the body but I have chosen not to reproduce them. I want this post to have the image of Nurin being happy.
Nurin had been missing for almost a month. During which she was abused and tortured and had bruises all over her body. She had lost a lot of weight and appeared gaunt. Her murderers had shaved part of her hair off. Her teeth appear large because death had caused her lips to become thin and taut. These may be the reasons why Nurin’s parents did not recognise her.
Of course, it is said that the first stage of grief is often denial. Perhaps there was an element of that here with the parents not willing to recognise that battered body as their daughter’s because with that comes the end of hope.
Now all we can do is offer our condolences and prayers to Nurin and her family and hope the police will be able to apprehend her killers and to give her justice.