After the death of Indriyas Masih on 21 August CENTRE FOR LEGAL AID ASSISTANCE AND SETTLEMENT (CLAAS) moved an application in the court of Mr Sajjad Ahmed, Judge in the Anti-terrorism court of Lahore for the medical examination of all 41-detained in the Youhanabad case.
The lawyer said that as Indriyas was living with other co-accused and there was an improper medical treatment, there are concerns that some different detainees might be experiencing the same or different ailments.
The court thusly issued directions to the superintendent of Kot Lakhpat jail, ordering the therapeutic examination of all detainees who were kept with Indriyas Masih in Kot Lakhpat jail.
Indriyas Ghulam 33, was blamed for lynching two men suspected with being involved with the attackers in Youhanabad on March 2015. He was the father of three children and was the most youngest among his six brothers and sisters.
He passed on in prison on 13 August 2017, because of Gastrointestinal Tuberculosis, it is claimed
His family and the community protested and demanded the government to treat this accident as a murder case , “claiming his untimely death was a result of negligence on the part of jail authorities, poor prison conditions, consumption of unclean water and food. His deteriorating health was continuously neglected by the jail authorities. According to the family, Indriyas was a healthy person and never had any major ailments before he was arrested.”
He was the sole earner of the family and a works on daily wages prior to his arrest 2015. In desire for a better life and wage, he moved from Bahawalpur to Lahore five years prior. His monthly income was around 7000 Pak Rupees. He lived in Gulu Kot 2-3 kilometers far from Youhanabad.
Nasir Saeed, Director CLAAS-UK expressed his concern over the death of Indriyas, saying it is extremely upsetting that Christian detainees are not consider as a human being.
He stated: “They have to face discrimination and are treated inhumanly in the prison too. It is believed that Indriyas died because of negligence and poor medical facilities in the prison.”
Indriyas was falsely blamed for lynching two men who were suspected of being involved with the twin church attack in Youhanabad in 2015. More than 500 “unidentified” Christians were reserved, while 84 Christians were later arrested. 42 were granted bail (many because CLAAS’ of support) and 42 were held in prison.
In March, this year these 42 Christians were asked to convert to Islam. The Deputy District Public Prosecutor Syed Anees Shah ensured their acquittal if they reject Christianity – despite that one of the accused insisting he would rather be hanged that convert. Nasir Saeed said it is an exceptionally unfortunate situation.
He included: “They’ve been suffering in jails for a very long time while all of them denied their involvement in the lynching of two suspect Muslims.”