Saturday, 21 November 2015

Sajjad Masih Gill's family has been forced to flee from home and still in hiding four years after blasphemy accusations

LAHORE: Sarfraz Masih Gill,the brother of the Christian Sajjad Masih Gill,31,who was accused of sending blasphemous texts and sentenced to life imprisonment and fined Rs.200,000/- (About $ 2000 US) for blasphemy on July 13,2013 in Gojra, has filed a petition in Lahore High Court for to hear the appeal against conviction of his brother which is pending before the August Court.
Sarfraz Masih Gill is appointed as an attorney in his brother's appeal case and the only day of Thursday is fixed for the family members to visit and see Sajjad in prison.He and his son Ramiz Gill were attacked on October 22,2015 and threatened of dire consequences when coming back home after visiting Sajjad in Sahiwal jail because of this blasphemy accusation which was falsely leveled against Sajjad and the family members have been in hiding for almost four years, ever since Sajjad was first arrested in 2011.

"We are attacked ,beaten and got death threats from unidentified. We can not stay in one place for very long and live in hiding without disclosing the exact residence.The children can not settle down and study and it is not normal to be constantly living in fear of attacks.It is our request and we urge the international community to speak up for his brother," Sarfraz said.

He further added that the blasphemy law has "ruined" our family's lives as many other's and he urged the Pakistani government to repeal it because the whole Christian community has to suffer if some Christian was accused in blasphemy.
The mother of Sajjad requested for early fixation of hearing in the appeal and wished to see his son's freedom from prison rather than hoping for financial support from any person. 

In line with details, two FIRs were registered against Sajjad and his ex-fiance Roma Ilyas about one incident of occurrence.Predominantly, in the case FIR No. 820/2011 under section 295 C PPC 16 MPO and 25-D Telegraph Act Sajjad was convicted life imprisonment and second FIR No 80/2012 under section 295 B and C PPC and section 25-D telegraph act was quashed against Sajjad.

Sardar Mushtaq Gill,Human Rights Defender who heads The Legal Evangelical Association Development-LEAD a Punjab-based legal aid and advocacy humanitarian organization,appearing and pursuing the appeal case of Sajjad Masih Gill for the petition for fixation earliest hearing and we at LEAD are in follow up of the family of the victim.

"The chances of Sajjad's acquittal are greater because there are a number of discrepancies and contradictions between the positions of the witnesses of the blasphemy case,"told Sardar Mushtaq Gill,Human Rights Defender and Advocate High Court.

Rallies and demonstrations were held yesterday across Pakistan after Friday prayers.In this regard, the largest rally started at Nasir Bagh in Lahore, and converted into a demonstration in front of the Punjab Assembly.Assembly. Mumtaz Hussain Qadri,who is a former commando of the Punjab Police’s Elite Force, was awarded capital punishment for murdering former Punjab Governor Salman Taseer in Islamabad’s Koshar Market on January 4, 2011. He shot 27 bullets straight at him. Later on, he admitted killing Salman Taseer because he publicly opposed the blasphemy law, called it a black law while calling for reforms to the notorious law.

While a common mentality showed in the Pakistani Muslim community is that Christians are "infidels" and if Christian accused in blasphemy then no need to investigate and to approve it because Christians do not have faith in Islamic creed about end of Prophet-hood and Islamic concept of last revealed book Quran hence they are considered as blasphemers by the eyes of Pakistani Muslim community which be the main cause of intolerance of other faith in Pakistan and damage the cause of interfaith harmony.

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