Saturday, 30 April 2016

Christian couple lynching case:Legal heirs witnesses physically abused in open court

LAHORE: The Lahore Anti-Terrorism Court has summoned all legal heirs eyes witnesses of the Kot Radha Kishan lynching case for cross-examination.On April 28,2016 Sardar Mushtaq Gill,human rights defender head of LEAD along with Mr.Kashif Alexander,Mr.Salvance Jacob and Mr.Aric John advocates high courts appeared in the Anti-terrorism Court,Lahore to represent as prosecution counsels of legal heirs eyes witnesses of Kot Radha Kishan's case of lynching to death of the Christian couple.

Khuram and Shahbaz both eyes witnesses were tried in cross-examination by the defense lawyers ,they also physically abused them during cross-examination in the same way as the legal heirs witnesses were abused during cross-examination in the previous hearing on April 20.The objection was raised by the counsels of legal heirs witnesses engaged by LEAD and same was given in the notice of the court but the court did not take it seriously.The harsh words were also exchanged when one of defense lawyers pushed Khuram ,one of eye witness, to make him pressurized and his hair of head were snatched in the court while he was being cross-examined.

LEAD has taken the case from April 20,2016 and till now six legal heirs eye witnesses have been completed for their cross-examination remaining will be crossed on next hearing fixed for May 3.The statements of all legal heir witnesses have already been recorded but remaining for cross-examination.
Iqbal Masih 'the elder brother’ of Shahzad and Shama burned alive in false blasphemy allegation,says, “We were assured that the case will be decided within a few months, but  one year and several months have passed since the tragic lynching of our brother and sister .”

“We are still being threatened and approached from different quarters to compromise and forgive the accused even on last hearing the accused extended life threats instead being in the custody of police” Iqbal added.


He further stated that they have been waiting for justice and hopeful that the case will soon be decided.


Sardar Mushtaq Gill,human rights defender said that the families of those who were in judicial lockup were still trying to influence and to pressurize the legal heirs witnesses.Some more accused have filed bail petitions hoping to influence the legal heirs to get release from jail.


"The four bail petitions have been filed and in these four bail petitions LEAD's counsels have submitted their power of attorney on behalf of legal heirs of victim Shahzad and shama and one of them dismissed as withdrawn after arguments ," Gill added.

He further stated that he was thankful for Christian lawyers Mr. Kashif Alexander ,Mr. Salvance Jacob and Mr. Aric John who are  providing their legal services to LEAD in this case without taking any remuneration from LEAD or any other.

LEAD's lawyers team is striving for justice for the legal heirs of Christian couple, who was burned alive after a false allegation of blasphemy, and we request the international community and the groups who are supporting the persecuted,victims of blasphemy law and survivors,please stand with us and encourage and strengthen our work with your support and voice and particularly for the victim family of Shahzad and Shama.

Monday, 25 April 2016

A married Christian woman gangraped at gunpoint

Toba Tek Singh:A Christian woman who was allegedly, gang raped by upscale brats at gunpoint, in a village near Rajana- a small town of District Toba Tek Singh in Punjab province. The two Muslim culprits identified as Zeeshan and Rizwan, sexually assaulted a Christian woman, Shazia Bibi (her real name is being withheld) at a time when she was alone at her home. Shazia’ husband is army personnel and is posted in Peshawar; for as much he was not present in the village, when the incident occurred.
The gangraped  victim  told that Zeeshan and Rizwan broke into her home at around 11 pm. She was subjected to sexual abuse till about 2 pm. At last, two Christian men namely Zahid Maish and Ayub heard Shazia’ screams and jumped into her home, consequently, Zeeshan and Rizwan fled.

The gangraped victim, resident was 291-GB near Rajana, revealed that Zeeshan Arif and Rizwan broke in her house while no-one else was at home. She said that at first, they tied her hands with a rope and gang raped her at gunpoint. Shazia told the police, that she screamed for help however, they did not relent.

After the incident, the victim approached the Rajana police station and filed the complaint against the 22-year-old Zeeshan son of Muhammad Arif and 20-year-old Rizwan son of Yaqub. She stated that she is being pressurized to withdraw her complaint.The police took action against the named culprits and carried out raids and hooked Zeeshan and Rizwan. All the while, the weapons used in this crime were also recovered by the police.

Sardar Mushtaq Gill,human rights defender, said that criminal justice is very expensive and weak in Pakistan from which the culprits take benefits to save theirs skin from punishment.Christian girls are easy target for Muslim offenders because of their limited access to compete with them to get justice which is eventually got compromised under threats and pressure.

LEAD's lawyers team will strive for justice for the survivor of gangrapped Christian woman and we request the international community and the groups who are supporting the victims and survivors,please stand with us and encourage and strengthen our work with your support and voice.

Friday, 22 April 2016

A christian father says his daughter forced to convert to Islam and marry her abductor


KASUR: Today April 22,2016,a Christian father met with Sardar Mushtaq Gill,human rights defender who heads LEAD an organization which provides free legal aid and advocacy and he requested for legal assistance in his daughter's case of abduction,forced conversion to Islam and marriage with her abductor.
On April 14 at about 1:30 am,a Christian girl,Laveeza Bibi 23, was abducted by two Muslims men who entered in home of a Christian man Sarwar Masih at midnight and on gunpoint abducted her daughter and threaten his father and mother who were present at home to kill them if they would make noise.

Masih submitted a complaint in local police station against the culprits but the police reluctant to register a case FIR against the abductors on the pretext that the abductee has accepted Islam and married with a Muslim abductor namely Muhammad Talib.

On the request of Local Priest Mr. Saleem Masih,DS Pattoki Church of Pakistan,LEAD has taken this case and will provide legal assistance and advocate against forced conversion to Islam and forced marriage.Now the complaint has been filed at DSP Pattoki for initiation of criminal proceeding against the abductor.

"Within this month at least five Christian girls have been abducted and converted to Islam and married with their abductors in this village from where this girl has been abducted and no legal protection for them in such issues",told Afzal Masih a local resident of village Jodh Singh Chak No.13 where this incident happened.  

LEAD request all Christian groups and organizations to take it serious and stand with us in defense of Christian victim women for their assistance and safety.LEAD is an organization which provides free legal assistance and advocacy to those victims of religious discrimination and sexual and domestic violence who can not afford to bear heavy legal cost of counsels etc.

Thursday, 21 April 2016

The Creeping Trial of the Killers of Christian Couple Burned Alive in Brick Kiln

LAHORE: Today April 20,2016,there was hearing of the mob killing of Shama and Shahzad in Anti-terrorism Court,Lahore in which LEAD's legal team comprising of Sardar Mushtaq Gill, Kashif Alexander and Aric John appeared and submitted their power of attorney on behalf of the victim family of the Christian couple,who was burned alive in brick kiln after being accused of throwing Quranic pages in a garbage, and we represented them during their cross-examination by the defense lawyers.The cross-examination of four eye witnesses has been completed,in this case, about 103 people are still in jail  and three have been released on bail including the brick kiln owner who was considered as prime suspect of the case.
During the hearing of cross-examination,two times harsh words were exchanged among both sides the lawyers.During break time,the arrested accused extended threats towards witnesses and same was given in the notice of the judge. During the cross-examinations,we personally felt the pain while the victim family was weeping and there were tears in their eyes.Victim family admitted before us that this is the first day when they felt that there are also lawyers who are in reality with them because of our true and with full commitment representation in court on their behalf.

Now the next date of hearing has been fixed for 28 April,2016 and the court ordered to Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (PEMRA) to get present a TV interview of the victim family which was conducted by a local TV channel, in the court because the defense lawyers wanted to take some benefit from that TV interview.



On 4 November,2014 between 6:30 am to 8:00 am ,the Christian couple was burned alive in furnace of brick Kiln and the same day early in the morning,the announcement was made from the loud speakers of the Mosques of the nearby villages and in hundreds a charged mob of Muslims attacked at the room where the couple was made hostage by the owner of kiln and from ceiling of the room some men entered and dragged out the couple and started beating them with clubs and fractured their legs and then the mob dragged the couple towards the kiln's furnace and burnt them alive.

The whole world is deeply shocked and scandalized over the lynching of the Christian couple which highlighted the need for urgent repeal of laws that are routinely used to persecute Christians and other minorities and to settle the personal grudges. The country’s controversial blasphemy laws, put in place in 1986 under General Zia Ul Haq rĂ©gime, were in focus once again.

In the previous instances verdicts for mob attacks on Christians are infrequent.In August 2009 in Gojra , seven Christians were burned alive to death on pretext of blasphemy while more than 100 homes were looted and burned. After four year, thousands of enraged Muslims rampaged through Joseph Colony in Lahore and torched more than 100 Christian homes including two churches. Savan Masih, a Christian who was accused of blasphemy, provoked the violence,who is now in jail on death row. No-one has been convicted for setting on fire Joseph Colony.


Rimsha Masih was arrested in a false blasphemy on 16 August, 2012 in Islamabad after a Muslim cleric accused her of burning the Qur'an's pages.Latter she was settled abroad.


In this year,a new fears for a Christian woman, Asia Bibi, on death row for blasphemy, as religious groups launched fresh calls for her hanging after the execution of Mumtaz Qadri who killed Salman Taseer,ex-governor, who voiced against misuse of blasphemy law.



Shahbaz Bhatti who was the first Federal Minister for Minorities Affairs from November 2008 until his assassination,had received numerous death threats since 2009, when he spoke in support of Pakistani Christians attacked in the 2009 Gojra riots in Punjab. These threats increased following his support for Asia Bibi, a Pakistani Christian sentenced to death in 2010 for blasphemy but authority failed to deliver justice for his killing.


Living in a land of 97% Muslims, the Christians in Pakistan have the fear of persecution all the time in the guise of threats, attacks, discrimination and hatred but one intimidation that hovers on them every time is the blasphemy laws. The lives of blasphemy accused,their family and their lawyers always under hanging sword during trial or in jail or even after release from the jail.


"Continued use of the blasphemy law is odious," and “As long as such laws remain on the books, Pakistan will remain afflicted by abuse in the name of religion and no safety for religious minorities,” said Advocate Sardar Mushtaq Gill, a Human Rights Defender who is himself under constant threats.


LEAD's team is under threats from a long time but in spite of such threats and intimidation LEAD has not stopped its services for victims of human rights violations and will not stop to voice on behalf of persecuted and against the violations of Human Rights in Pakistan particularly for victims of blasphemy law.


We at LEAD fight for justice for those who are persecuted and we ask you to stand with us for this great cause and for our mission for the assistance of persecuted and for timely needed action for them because we can do nothing without your support.Pray for justice and safety for the victim family of Shahzad and Shama who were burned alive in furnace after false allegation of blasphemy and also pray for LEAD's team.

Monday, 18 April 2016

The crack in justice for alive burning a Christian Couple in blasphemy law

LAHORE: The primary suspect of atrocious incident of lynching of a Christian couple alive, over false blasphemy charges has been set free on bail.

Yousaf Gujjar, who was named the primary suspect in the alive lynching case has been granted bail, despite the fact that it has been admitted by Deputy Inspector General of Police Kasur and members of the Joint Investigations Team, scrutinizing the incident formerly stated before the High Court under oath that if it wasn’t for this individual (Yousaf Gujjar and 3 others) “the incident would never have happened.”
Moreover, the suspicion surrounding Yousaf Gujjar’s bail become palpable when A.S.I Mohammad Ali, himself refused to identify Yousaf Gujjar as the ring leader of the lynching, despite the fact that same police official was the original complainant of the State against Yousaf Gujjar and three other individuals in the case when it was initially lodged.

Yousaf Gujjar is the owner of the brick kiln where Shahzad and Shamma labored, and the very same kiln were both were thrown alive in raging flames, only to be reduced to ashes. Initially, the police arrested Yousaf Gujjar and three others who were accused to have incited the mob against the Christians couple.

On November 4, 2014; a charged mob of around 1600 burnt Shahzad and Shamma alive in a brick kiln owned by Yousaf Gujjar. The Christian couple was accused of blasphemy which incited a horrific end to their lives. The incident took place in Chak 59 of Kot Radha Kishan, district Kasur of Punjab province of Pakistan.

Subsequently, On November 10, an anti-terrorism court remanded in custody four people including Yousaf Gujjar and three others who were accused of killing the Pakistani Christian couple Shamma and Shahzad, for alleged blasphemy. Bail petitions were filed on their behalf, however, they were turned down at that time.

Previously, the Apex court of Pakistan has strongly criticized the negligence of police during the lynching incident and took the police to task by saying that five policemen including an ASI were present on the scene at the brick kiln where the Christian couple were being burnt alive; however, still the mob managed to burn the Christians. 

Sardar Mushtaq Gill,human rights defender who heads LEAD along with his team is striving for justice and religious freedom in Pakistan and contributing in the promotion of human rights without discrimination of caste,faith and creed.He is under constant threats from extremists due to his human rights work and dedication with the victims of human rights violations in Pakistan.

We at LEAD request you to stand with us and support our for human rights work in Pakistan.We at LEAD are striving for promotion of justice and freedom of faith and provide advocacy and legal assistance to those who are victims of human rights violations in Pakistan .Our request to our Lord to give us strength and courage to strive for justice on behalf of others who are victims of human rights. 

Saturday, 16 April 2016

Bail petition of the horrifying murder of a Catholic believer withdrew


SHEIKHUPURA : Today  April 16,2016 the bail petition of two Muslims brothers ,who barbarically hacked to death a Catholic man, have withdrew from the court of Mr. Muhammad Faisal Ahmad additional and sessions judge Ferozwala after hearing the arguments of the lawyers.On behalf of the complainant Sardar Mushtaq Gill,human rights defender and head of LEAD along with Mr.Kashif Alexander Rajpoot advocate High Court and Mr.Aric John submitted power of attorney and they appeared in the court to represent the victim family because the victim family has engaged LEAD's lawyers for legal assistance.  

On April 5 at evening,Nazeer Masih, 60, and Mohammad Nawaz, a 42-year-old Muslim man, were in a field when two Muslims brothers Naazar Ali and Haider Ali attacked at them with a knife on a trivial dispute of plot of land.They allegedly armed with a chopping knife and cut Masih's throat and killed him at the scene of incident and severely beaten his Muslim friend who was able to save his life and subsequently reluctant to disclose the true reason of killing.According to Khalid Shahzad,the killers have dispute came forward to stop them to do so.

Iqbal Masih ,who is the son of murdered man,submitted a complaint at Ferozwala Police Station against the murderers and FIR no.343/2016 under section 302/324 PPC registered.

Sardar Mushtaq Gill,human rights defender who heads LEAD along with his team is striving for justice and religious freedom in Pakistan and contributing in the promotion of human rights without discrimination of caste,faith and creed.He is under constant threats from extremists due to his human rights work and dedication with the victims of human rights violations in Pakistan.

We at LEAD request you to stand with us and support our for human rights work in Pakistan.We at LEAD are striving for promotion of justice and freedom of faith and provide advocacy and legal assistance to those who are victims of human rights violations in Pakistan .Our request to our Lord to give us strength and courage to strive for justice on behalf of others who are victims of human rights. 

Rape attempt on 32-year-old a Catholic mother of three


KASUR: A Muslim man namely Sadhu Ali fearlessly entered into  a Catholic Christian's home and foiled a rape attempt on a Catholic mother of three children,Zuhra Bibi, on Wednesday April 13 at about 9 PM  at a brick-kiln situated at village Jaleki,Kasur while she was taking bath. She made a noise and cried loudly which was noticed by the neighbors and their's timely intervention,the nefarious act of rape attempt of the Muslim man was not be successful.  

Subsequently,Sheeda Masih,the husband of the victim woman, submitted a complaint application at local police Station for registration of a criminal case against the culprits but the police official threatened him to withdraw the complaint instead to initiate a criminal proceeding against the culprits.

Today Masih along with her wife reached at LEAD's office for redressal and requested for assistance. Sardar Mushtaq Gill,human rights defender assured LEAD's full support and assistance for the victim family for the sake of justice.
The victim family, along with LEAD and the other Christian residents of the area, protested the incident and demanded the immediate arrest of the alleged culprits.Husband of the victim woman told Mr.Gill that he would commit suicide if the justice would not be provided to them.  

The victim woman was terrified while sitting at LEAD's office because of trauma happened with her and threats extended towards her husband on pistol from the brother of the culprit Qurban Ali who taunted her husband as a 'Chura'. 

"I am not doing work on brick kiln and my children are starving from last three days,"said Sheeda Masih.He further stated that he had requested to Church to pray for his family safety and justice. 


We at LEAD are striving for promotion of justice and freedom of faith and provide advocacy and legal assistance to those who are victims of human rights violations in Pakistan .Our request to our Lord to give us strength and courage to strive for justice on behalf of others who are victims of human rights.