Srinagar: Carmen Greentree, a former Australian pro surfer, in her book 'A Dangerous Pursuit of Happiness', revealed that she was held captive by a houseboat owner in Jammu and Kashmir for two months, and raped her repeatedly.
She told the Daily Mail Australia that she travelled to India to meet the Dalai Lama in Dharamshala at the age of 22. This was after she failed to make it to the Women’s World Championship Tour in 2003.
Greentree, then known as Carmen Buecher, stated that after arriving in New Delhi, some scammers who posed as government tourism operators conned her in taking a flight to Srinagar. There, she was received by her rapist Rafiq Ahmad Dundoo. He told her that it is dangerous for a woman to be outside alone, and she should stay with him.
Dundoo escorted her to his houseboat named YH Sunbeam, in Dal Lake and told her to spend the night before getting on a bus to Dharamshala. Instead, he took away her passport and belongings, and repeatedly raped her.
Greentree further added that Dundoo’s family, including his wife, parents, brother and children, lived on the same boat, but didn’t help. They made her wear traditional Kashmiri attire and pray five times a day. She was even made to read the Quran.
“The worst feeling was when I gave in and let him take what he wanted. That was the first time he raped me. I was too tired, I couldn’t fight anymore, and I knew he wasn’t going to stop,” she told Daily Mail.
She claims the rescue was only set in motion after her close friend Katherine had a dream that made her believe Greentree was in trouble.
Katherine told the Australian High Commission in India to investigate, which persuaded local police to treat her as a missing person.
In the process, the culprit made one mistake. Dundoo drained all the money from her account and also made her call back home for more cash. This eventually led her location to be traced and she was rescued.
The officers then took her to a hotel in New Delhi, where she shared her ordeal to the police.
Dundoo and his brother Shabir Ahmad Dundoo were arrested, but Greentree states she didn't go back to testify due to the trauma. 'I was supposed to go back to India and give evidence in court but I couldn't go through with it, I wish I had,' she said.
The duo spent six months in jail charged with rape before the case collapsed and they were released.
With that being said, a report in The Print suggests that there are certain discrepancies in Greentree’s ordeal. Australian publications which reported the incident back then mentioned that she managed to escape the boat and fled to Delhi where she met officials of the Australian High Commission.
Greentree now works in holistic medicine and lives on the banks of Lake Illawarra, south of Wollongong, with her husband Grant and three children.