Christians paid homage to the courageous Christian leader Shahbaz Bhatti (late) on the occasion of the Minorities’ Day on August 11. Shahbaz Bhatti was commemorative while the participants paid tribute to his valor and audacity, as he was assassinated for raising his voice for the rights of minorities in Pakistan.
In an event organized by the Pakistan Minorities’ Alliance, (PMA) in order to mark the National Minorities’ Day 2016, the attendees expressed heartfelt deference to deceased leader of Pakistani Christians. This event was organized at the Ambassador Hotel, Lahore. In this regard a candle light vigil was held at the same time when the participants lit candles and honored the valor of the great leader.
This event was also organized to mark the third anniversary of the Pakistan Minorities’ Alliance. This event was attended by people from various faiths, who expressed solidarity with each other and paid tribute to undeterrent endeavors of martyr Shahbaz Bhatti.
Shahbaz Bhatti, Pakistan’s then Federal Minister of Minorities Affairs, was slain by Taliban. He was gunned down on March 2, 2011 outside his mother’s house in Islamabad. He was an ardent supporter of repeal in blasphemy laws. He raised his voice for the high profile blasphemy respondent Asia Bibi along with calling for reform in the controversial law.
In a statement USCIRF stated: “Shahbaz Bhatti, a close friend of USCIRF, was murdered for his tireless support of religious freedom and his campaign against Pakistan’s blasphemy law, a law that conflicts with fundamental human rights protections. It is long past time for the Pakistani government to bring to justice Bhatti’s killers, reform and then repeal the blasphemy law, and release, pardon and ensure the safety of all individuals imprisoned for blasphemy.”