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Charity hails apex court’s directive concerning use of word “Masihi” for Christians


Christian charity CLAAS has welcomed the directive of the Supreme Court of Pakistan regarding use of word “Masihi” for Christians. In this regard, Director of CLAAS-UK Mr. Nasir Saeed has hailed the apex court’s ruling. He said that this was a positive step towards a more tolerant Pakistan. He said that this step will certainly inhibit tumor of religion based hatred in the society.

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Nasir Saeed said that by dint of this decision relationship between Christians and Muslims in Pakistan will be improved. Reflecting about the impact of the word “Esai” for Christians he said: “Christians are offended whenever they are called Esai. They have been objecting and expressing their concern over the use of this insulting and pejorative word, but the government has not paid attention.”

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Further continuing he said that despite the fact that the apex court has issued directive the implementation may take several years. The current environment of disrespect and discrimination towards the Christian community will take decades to change, he said.

On May 11, Friday, a two member bench of the apex court issued directions while hearing the petition case filed by a Pakistani Christian Samuel Pyara. This two member bench was chaired by the Chief Justice of Pakistan Justice Mian Saqib Nisar himself. Justice Ijaz ul Hassan was the other member of this bench hearing the case number H.R.C.No.20171-B of 2018. Samuel Payara had moved the court regarding use of word ‘Masihi’ for Christians instead of ‘Esai’.

“It has been complained despite the decision taken by the Council of Islamic Ideology in its 175th meeting held on 28-29th September, 2009 that there was no harm, as per Shariah Injunctions, to refer to the members of Christian community as “Masihi” instead of “Esai”, no steps have been taken by the government in this regard.

Let the recommendations of the Council of Islamic Ideology be implemented in letter and spirit and arrangement should be made in all official records, documents, correspondence etc. to refer to the Christian community as Masihi instead of Esai,” the Supreme Court directed.