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Mar-21-2013 17:02printcomments

PAKISTAN: Presbyterian Pastor Naeem Bhadhar Targeted to be the Next Accused of Blasphemy

According to the pastor the FIR has not been registered yet and his church management is looking into the matter.

Naeem Bhadhar being attacked
Naeem Bhadhar being attacked. From the Facebook page for 'Christians in Pakistan'

(ISLAMABAD) - On March 16, 2013, a local English daily paper, “Daily Times, Islamabad” wrote about the Christian pastor who was being beaten by some fundamentalists, when was going back to his home in the late evening.

Pastor Naeem Bhadhar, a Presbyterian missionary living in Kalaswala village on Pasroor Road, district Sialkot, 140 kilometres away from Lahore city, told me on the telephone that he had arranged a protest rally in their city, but on March 14 when he was travelling back to his village, a few radical Muslims from Jamaat-ud-Dawa severely beat him with sticks and destroyed his motorcycle.

He was severely injured and was taken to hospital where he got a number of stitches on his left arm. He has been warned by the extremist group that if any Christian organizes further protests, he will be killed! (see: http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2013%5C03%5C16%5Cstory_16-3-2013_pg7_15)

After the threats, he went into hiding to save his life, where he remains. A couple of days back, when I called him but couldn’t connect, I realized the sensitivity of the matter and had left a text message on his cell number. He called me and told me that the fanatic Muslims has filed an application at the local police station and were forcing the officials to register a First Investigation Report – FIR against Pastor Naeem Bhadhar.

According to the pastor the FIR has not been registered yet and his church management is looking into the matter. Even then he is scared and living away from his home town- Kalaswala. The complainant is Muhammad Zia ullah Mustafa Atteeq Hamdami s/o Haji Ghulam Nabi Hamdami, who is cleric at the local mosque.

About Shamim Masih

"I am Christian rights activist and freelancer Pakistani journalist specializing in writing about Christians rights for the different papers in the world. My aim is to create a peaceful environment in the society and to help eliminate Christian persecution through my writing as I bring the plight of these brave people under the spotlight of the whole world."

Shamim Masih was born in Sheikhopura's village and raised in Gujranwala, a city in Pakistan's Punjab province. He earned his Bachelors Degree from the University of the Punjab, Lahore majoring in English, Economics and Statistics; he also received a Masters Degree in Business Administration.

As a freelance writer and author, Shamim has written for different papers in the world; his expertise is in writing articles highlighting different social issues. He has served as freelance chief reporter and column writer in “Minority Times” in Islamabad, and a number of Shamim's articles have been published in local papers as well.

You can write to Shamim at this address: shamimpakistan@gmail.com

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