Visit our new British Pakistani Christians website

Visit our new British Pakistani Christians website
This site will no longer publish new material. Please join our new website

Monday, 19 October 2009

NJCP Press Relase

I received a copy of this press release from Brother Yuel Bhatti in Lahore this weekend (sic):

Dear Friends,

Please find below the press Release from NCJP.

Yuel Bhatti
Lahore Pakistan

Press Release

The Extra Judicial murder of Fanish Robert, an accused under blasphemy in Sialkot is sheer negligence on part of governments; NCJP

The District Police Officer Sialkot, Mr. Waqar Ahmad Chohan informed the local Priest that the youth accused of offering insult to Quran at Jatheki on 11 September, 2009 has committed suicide in the jail. He had been shifted to jail in Sialkot the night before on 14 September 2009.
Fanish was taken into custody after the allegations that he had thrown a chapter from Quran (Para) in a drain when he met Ms. Hina Asghar, whom he happened to be liking or nurturing a relationship reportedly. Girls mother was reported to be a witness to alleged incident.

The allegations were followed by massive reaction orchestrated by local Muslim clerics. A church and a few houses were attack on September 11th, 2009 around 12.30 a.m. After the Friday afternoon prayers, the extremist organizations operating in the area whipped up a hate campaign through mosque loudspeakers and collected a mob ready to attack the Christians Houses (35-40) in Jatheki, a Town with a large Muslim population. However the police and rangers were able to prevent further mob attacks. Riasat Masih, the father of Fanish was arrested and beaten but was released on 12th September when Fanish was taken into custody.
NCJP Stance:

The National Commission for Justice and Peace (NCJP) condemns the killing of Fanish in custody. We refuse to accept the version of local authorities that he committed suicide spontaneously after he was shifted to jail from police lock up.

We demand a credible investigation and registration of a case under a murder charge. Persons responsible for death of innocent youth, directly or indirectly, should be brought to justice. Archbishop Lawrence John Saldanha and Peter Jacob, the chair and Executive Secretary of the NCJP through this statement call upon all sections of the society to realize the danger of blasphemy laws. (For religious minorities these laws have proven to be a catastrophe which can surface anytime anywhere. In the past few weeks circumstances have been created at a number of places in Punjab and in Karachi.

We consider this a failure on part of Provincial government of Punjab and Federal government who worked with administration and rehabilitation approach rather than prevention. The governments should admit and inform the masses of Pakistan about the organization creating situations using this law. The Federal government should immediately move to repeal of section 295 B, C and 298 A, b and C of Pakistan Penal Code.

Archbishop Lawrence John Saldanha Peter Jacob
Chair and Head of Catholic Church in Pakistan Executive Secretary

No comments:

Post a Comment