Christian lawyer, Advocate Sardar Mushtaq Gill has heaped condemnation on the Pakistani Church leaders and the politicians saying neither of them ever urged the government to take action against the assassins of Christian leader Shahbaz Bhatti. He said that even after more than five years have passed, his assassins have not been brought to justice. He said that Human Rights activists must be provided protection by the government.
Advocate Sardar Mushtaq who heads a Christian advocacy organization Legal Evangelical Association Development (LEAD) whined over the fact that back in 2011, Shahbaz Bhatti, Christian leader and human rights defender was gunned down by terrorist outfit for standing up the human rights of Asia Bibi and other religious minorities imperiled by the blasphemy laws in the country.
He said that Shahbaz Bhatti stood out as the most influential human rights defender who raised his voice for the rights of Christians in the country. Despite the fact that, his life was at serious risk, no security was provided to him, on the other hand, the perpetrators blatantly claimed responsibility of killing him were never hooked, he complained.
He further went on to censure the Christian political leaders and Church leadership that they did not urge the government to investigate into Shahbaz Bhatti’ murder and bring the assassin to justice. He said that neither of the Christian leaders carried on the vision of Shahbaz Bhatti and did not demanded that the blasphemy laws be repealed.
Adding to this, he demanded that government should provide cover to the Human Rights Defenders, who are like sitting ducks for extremists. Security of rights activists has always been a great concern in Pakistan. Moreover, not only these activists are imperiled, their families are also at risk. Matters become severe when the activist is engaged in providing assistance or raising voice for blasphemy victims, he said.
He called upon the government to recognize the striving efforts and hassles human rights defenders have to go through, while performing their tasks. He said that these activists should be provided state sanctioned protection, while the general notion of extremism towards human rights activists needs to be curbed by the state.