Report of another Church Attack in Township, Lahore

Another Church attack at Township, Lahore 

UntitledOn Tuesday March 24, 2015 the Saint Peter’s Catholic Church and High School in Township, Lahore came under attack when two motorcyclists opened fire with the intent to cause as much damage as possible. Same day Mr. Joseph Francis (National Director CLAAS) was telephonically informed about the incident. Immediately CLAAS team consisted on Mr. Sohail Habel (Finance Manager) Mr. Hunny Bashir (Assistant In- charge Legal Department) and Asif Raza (Assistant Field Officer) rushed towards the place of occurrence to collect the real facts. Team met with the Parish Priest and some other citizen of the locality.

Fr. Clarnes Hayat: (Parish Priest of Saint Peter’s Catholic Church) 

Untitled1According to Fr. Clarnes four months ago he came in this Church as priest. The said Church established since 1973 and probably more than 700 families are regular members of this Church. During four months he did not receive any threat. But today on March 24, 2015 probably at about 2:10 p.m. two unknown motorcyclists bearing bike No. LEM 3494 model 2013 came outside the Church and started firing on main gate of St. Peter’s Catholic Church, Township Lahore. Two police officials who were engaged for security of Church started fought back and chased them.

Due to their firing two passersby were injured namely Imran and Majeed. Further due to rapid response of police both attackers ran away. Further he added that before half an hour at 1: 30 p.m. after closing the school, some students were present on the gate of school but due to rapid response of police they remain safe but after this incident people of the locality became frightened.

Aziz Sahotra:

Team also met with Aziz Sahotra a local resident of Township, his house is near the St. Peter’s Church and he is a regular member of this Church said at about 02:10 p.m. he was present in his house as he heard the noise of firing he came out from his house and saw two unknown persons aged between 22 or 23 were firing on Church. Two police officials who were present for security of the Church also made crossed firing and resultantly the attacker ran away.

Aslam Kami: (President of Christian Youth Township, Lahore) 

Aslam alias Kami resident of Township, Lahore is a regular member of St. Peter’s Church, he shared that, at the time of incident he was not present. He came at the place of occurrence after 5 to 10 minutes and saw two passersby were injured and admitted in Jinnah Hospital Lahore.

John Karamat s/o Karamat Masih: 

John Karamat aged 19, resident of Township, Lahore shared with the team that, at the time of incident he was present with his elder brother Aslam on main gate of the Church. Suddenly two unknown person aged between 22 or 23, came and started firing on main gate of the Church. John ran away and hides himself in nearby shop whereas two passersby were injured due to the firing and after that the motorcyclists ran away then his elder brother tried to chase both attackers but all in vain because they were on bike.

Muhammad Shahid (Police official) 

Untitled2A police official, Muhammad Shahid was deputed for second shift, he came after the incident and team also met with him. He appreciated the positive response of the police officials who were on duty before him. He added that the first priority of the police is to protect the citizens and as they were deputed for the security of the church, they fight against the attackers bravely.

Muhammad Shakeel (Mechanic) 

Untitled3Muhammad Shakeel resident of Fatteh Garrh, he is a mechanic by profession and has running his workshop (bike repairing) in Township, Lahore. He told to the team that, at the time of incident he was taking lunch at his shop. Suddenly he heard the noise of firing immediately he closed his shop and hid himself  inside. As the atmosphere became normal and attacker has gone then he opened his shop and came to know two people were injured who were often visited at the shop of Shabaz, who is also mechanic and owner of the Shahbaz Auto Shop.

Team Findings: 

  • After the incident of Youhanabad, Lahore these incidents are increasing day by day and Christians are under threat.
  • Christians and Churches are not safe in Pakistan any militant mob can attack any time.
  • Christians are being threatened by extremist and they are being psychologically tortured.

Reported By:

CLAAS Pakistan