LAHORE: At least 130 Christians and far more Muslims are loitering in Pakistani jails under blasphemy charges.
According to Fides, still more than 100 Pakistani Christians are facing severe consequences as they pine away in jails booked under blasphemy charges. Interestingly, court hearings in such cases are delayed or re scheduled several times as a general rule thus prolonging their ordeal.
Father James Channan, from the Peace Centre in Lahore revealed that according to his knowledge approximately 30 Christians are now facing blasphemy charges in Pakistan. They are imprisoned and while prolonged legal procedures, pressure from the local religious outfits and various other factors impede administration of justice to them.
“According to my estimate, there are 130 Christians whose trials are pending,” Father James Channan said, “But people will be surprised to learn that there are about 950 Muslims currently held under the law.
The law is far more enacted against Muslims, and very often it is a tool to settle business disputes or personal vendettas.” “But there is a big difference between accusations of Muslims and Christians: if one Muslim is accused, just one Muslim is accused,” he continued.
“But in the case of a Christian being accused, an entire community, an entire neighborhood is accused. And in several cases the entire Christian village or a Christian neighborhood has been burned to ashes,” he claimed.