Owner of Karachi-based Christian television channel, Gawahi TV files an FIR containing charges of blasphemy against unknown perpetrators over burning of Gwahi TV’s building.
Gawahi TV is a web-based Christian television channel which preached Christianity by airing, Bible teachings, Christian hymns, sermons, youth evangelism programs and many more. Recently, just last week, the building of Gawahi TV mysteriously caught fire and all the valuable equipments, Bibles, Christian literature was reduced to ashes.
The building of Gawahi TV is located near the Saint Peter’s Church in the Akhtar Colony, where members of various religious communities dwell. Gawahi TV is a project of Gawahi Trust which is run under the patronage of a Pakistani Christian Sarfraz Williams.
Shortly after the incident, the police put forth claims that the fire was caused due to short circuit, however, the owner and workers remained adamant that this was not the underlying cause of the arson. “How could anyone do this? I saw with my tears-filled eyes the Holy Bible’s pages blackened by the fire. How could their heart allow them to set ablaze this truth?” says one of the workers of Gawahi TV.
Nonetheless, after much endeavours the owner of Gawahi TV, Sarfraz Williams managed to get an FIR filed at the Mehmoodabad police station. After four days to the incident, the police registered an FIR containing charges of blasphemy, Sarfarz Williams told.
“We have been getting threatening phone calls and messages and we suspect the office was set on fire by some people who didn’t want the channel to continue working,” he asserted. What is more, Sarfraz claims that chemicals were used to set off the combustion which engulfed all costly equipment and Christian literature in the office of Gawahi TV.
In this regard, the SHO of Mahmoodabad police station, Sarwar Commando said that an FIR has been registered under sections of “mischief by fire or explosive substance with intent to destroy a house and injuring or defiling place of worship with intent to insult the religion of any class.”
He further stated that Section 295 was brought into play as religious books had been desecrated and it accounts to “blasphemy.”
This is a unique case, in a sense that the blasphemy laws are used against Christians, however, in this particular case, a Christian has filed a police complaint invoking blasphemy law.