Christian Protests Erupt in Sargodha After Mob Attack Over Blasphemy Allegation

Christian Protests Erupt in Sargodha After Mob Attack Over Blasphemy Allegation
Christian Protests Erupt in Sargodha After Mob Attack Over Blasphemy Allegation/ani
Christian Protests Erupt in Sargodha After Mob Attack Over Blasphemy Allegation
Christian Protests Erupt in Sargodha After Mob Attack Over Blasphemy Allegation/ani

Christian Protests Erupt in Sargodha After Mob Attack Over Blasphemy Allegation

Christian Protests Erupt in Sargodha After Mob Attack Over Blasphemy Allegation

Christian Protests Erupt in Sargodha After Mob Attack Over Blasphemy Allegation

Key Highlights:

  1. Over 400 suspects charged, and 25 arrested for mob attack in Sargodha.
  2. Christian communities across Pakistan protest against repeated violence.
  3. Christian factory owner accused of blasphemy attacked; survives lynching attempt.

Lahore [Pakistan], May 27 (VoM): The Christian community erupted in protests after a Muslim mob attacked a Christian factory owner in Punjab’s Sargodha district over alleged blasphemy, as reported by the Union of Catholic Asian News (UCA News). The incident took place on May 25 in Mujahid Colony, where the mob assaulted the factory owner, vandalized his house, and set properties on fire.

Nosherwan Iqbal, chairman of the Peace Committee in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa’s Hazara division, demanded justice for the Christian community, highlighting the recurrence of such tragedies. Protests were held across cities from Peshawar to Karachi.

Following the incident, over 400 unidentified suspects have been charged, and 25 arrested under terrorism and other offenses, according to Dawn. The factory owner, Nazir Masih, was accused of burning pages of the Quran and was attacked by a mob armed with batons, bricks, and stones. Despite surviving the lynching attempt, he was critically injured.

The state registered a case under the Anti-Terrorism Act (ATA) 1997 and sections of the Pakistan Penal Code (PPC). However, Masih was also booked for blasphemy based on a report by Tehreek-i-Labbaik Pakistan activist Muhammad Jahangir. Despite the accusations, local residents testified that no one witnessed him burning the pages, and his family is known to be humble.

The mob destroyed electricity meters and outdoor AC units at Masih’s residence, set a shoe unit on fire, and tried to break into his house. The police, with the help of the Sargodha Peace Committee, managed to control the situation and rescue the man, though they faced significant violence.

In response, Punjab Inspector General of Police Usman Anwar and Home Secretary Noorul Amin Mengal inspected the crime scene. Provincial Minister for Minority Affairs Ramesh Singh Arora took notice of the alleged blasphemy, and security around churches in Sargodha was tightened.

DPO Asad Ejaz Malhi insisted that no one was hurt and that the police were maintaining law and order. Unverified social media footage showed a mob attacking an injured man and wrecking furniture, which DPO Malhi claimed were fake videos.

The incident underscores the precarious situation faced by religious minorities in Pakistan, who remain vulnerable to persecution and mob violence.

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