A Christian man was shot dead in Peshawar, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Province on Saturday, in what officials say is the second incident of target killing of minorities in the last 24 hours, reported The Khorasan Diary.
According to police, Kashif Maseeh was gunned down by armed motorcyclists on his doorstep. Yesterday, a Sikh shopkeeper was gunned down in Peshawar in a similar manner. There have been no responsibility claims for the attacks, added The Khorasan Diary.
Sikh Minority shopkeeper Dayal Singh was killed by gunmen in the Dir Colony of Peshawar. Peshawar Police said that Dayal Singh was sitting at his shop when unknown motorcyclists killed him and fled around 3 pm on Friday.
Minorities have faced continuous violent attacks in Pakistan. A Pakistani Hindu doctor Dr Birbal Genani became a victim of target killing near Layari in Karachi while returning home from his clinic on Thursday, Dunya News reported.
Former Karachi Metropolitan Corporation (KMC) senior director of health and eye specialist Dr Birbal Genani was shot dead by unknown assailants in Karachi on Thursday, Geo News reported.
Last week, Hindu shopkeepers were assaulted in Pakistan for allegedly “violating the Ramzan Ordinance” by eating, Pakistan based The Express Tribune newspaper reported.
The police officer in a video that went viral on social media, was seen roaming the Ghotki district with a stick in his hands. The police officer thrashed Hindu restaurant owners including Hindu men who were reportedly preparing biryani for delivery orders in the local market.
Meanwhile, Sindhi Hindus carried 15 points to the Sindh government to ensure the protection of Hindus in the province.
On March 30, 2023, Pakistan Darawar Itehad Organization organized a protest from the Karachi Press Club to the Sindh Assembly – the large people of Hindus joined the protest, most of them were the victim families whose daughters were forcibly converted to Islam, killing and kidnapping of Hindus and the encroachment of the land and temples, reported The Rise News.
In Sindh, the cry has been heard regarding forced conversion since 2012, not only in the Sindh province including Punjab province and other areas of the country. Still, the state has not safeguarded Non-Muslims – indeed, the lack of safety led them to protest and make the ruling government listen to their problems.
Words of forced conversion on placards were written and later, protesters were asked to hide the word, ‘forced.’ The protesters were not allowed to carry their placards with slogans, which carried the word “Forced” – Forced conversion.
Protesters realized that neither Human Rights organizations, nor activists joined their protest against forced conversion. However, Pakistan Hindu Council and Pakistan Hindu Panchayat did not show up their presence, reported The Rise News.
Moreover, a Human Rights Observer 2023 fact sheet has underscored the increase in religious content against minorities in curriculum and textbooks during the year 2022 in Pakistan, reported Dawn.
The Centre for Social Justice (CSJ) on Thursday issued the “Human Rights Observer 2023”, an annual fact sheet. The report covers five key issues impacting religious minorities including discrimination in the education system, the prevalence of forced faith conversions, abuse of blasphemy laws, the establishment of the National Commission for Minorities and jail remissions for minority prisoners.
The fact sheet showed that as many as 171 people were accused under the blasphemy laws, 65 per cent of cases surfaced in Punjab and 19 per cent in Sindh, reported Dawn.
At least 2,120 individuals had been accused of committing blasphemy between 1987 and 2022. The trend witnessed an increase in the aggregate abuse of blasphemy laws in Punjab in the past 36 years — above 75 per cent.
However, 52 per cent of the accused belonged to minorities despite their small ratio (3.52 per cent) in the population of Pakistan, the report added.
The fact sheet stated that no progress was made regarding providing remission to minority prisoners during 2022, despite the fact that this concession had been available for Muslim prisoners since 1978.
Furthermore, 124 reported incidents of forced faith conversions involving girls/women from minority communities were analysed which included 81 Hindu, 42 Christian, and one Sikh. Only 12 per cent of the victims were adults and the age of 28 per cent of the victims was not reported.
Sixty-five per cent of cases of forced faith conversion were reported in Sindh in 2022, followed by 33 per cent in Punjab, and 0.8 per cent each in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Balochistan, reported Dawn.
Meanwhile, the establishment of the statutory National Commission for Minorities (NCM) remained pending.
As per the report, a weak and lopsided draft has now been presented in the parliament in March 2023 which may become a reason for further delay and the ultimate establishment of the NCM, reported Dawn. (ANI)