LAHORE: Out cry for a separate Christian Province fanned after distressing anti-Christian incidents in the country.
According to details, Christians insist for “a separate province in Pakistan” predominantly affected by the incident where as many as 180 Christian-owned homes, shops and two Churches were burned down by an angry Muslim mob in the city of Lahore.
“A Christian-ruled province could have avoided incidents such as attacks against Lahore’s Joseph Colony, a Christian neighbourhood,” explain Christian activists and politicians.
“We request all Christian political, religious and civil society leaders to raise their voice… for a separate province for Christians, where we can live without fear of the majority’s faith and concepts” added the Legal Evangelical Association Development group and the Pakistan Christian Congress (PCC) party.
Under the plan devised,”Punjab province would be divided in four parts, including one for minority Christians and the others for Sunni Muslims and the Hazara and Seraiki communities.”
A Christian activist, Sardar Mushtaq Gill says, “Only followers of Islam have right to say whatever they wish to say and preach, but Christians have no such right,” in heavily Islamic Pakistan. Christians have no religious liberty and are not free to preach and teach according to Biblical faith.”
He continues, “This is not due to only political matters but this is due to a clash of faith. The solution of this tense situation is that the demand of a separate province for Pakistani Christians.”
There have been extensive dialogue concerning this demand with the authorities, yet it remains uncertain whether the recent anti-Christian violence episodes will act as catalyst to come to agreement with the government.
Pakistan Christian Congress has struggled for Separate Christian Province in Pakistan:
On April, 21, 1992, at Hotel Jabees, Karachi, the President, Pakistan Christian Congress, Mr. Nazir S Bhatti, demanded the separate province for the Christians of Pakistan, dividing Punjab province in 3 provinces. Bearing in mind that the Christians are second biggest population in Punjab.