Young Sara, a torture victim at only 8 years old, pictured with her mother. [more pictures at bottom of post]
The untouchable status of Christians in Pakistan became very apparent in recent days when an 8 year old girl, Sara Bibi, was scolded, beaten and locked
in school washrooms allegedly by her head teacher in a fit of rage that a ‘kaffir’ (infidel) Christian dared to use the same toilet as Muslims.
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Sara Bibi, the youngest of five siblings, has now been excluded from Government Girls Primary School in Samundari near Faisalabad, Punjab, where she
was a year 3 pupil.
Reports suggest the innocent girl was accused by other classmates who had been offended by the actions of a ‘choora’ Christian who had polluted their toilets,
highlighting how the hatred towards Christians is cemented into young minds at a very nascent phase. This pariah status of Christians is prevalent
Headmistress of the school, Zahida Rana has been accused of locking Sara in the bathroom, the principal then shouted aggressively at her : “You are a Christian, an infidel. How dare you use the same toilet as Muslim girls?
Despite vigorously pleading her innocence Sara was beaten and only released from the washroom 3 hours later at the end of the school day, much to the chagrin
of her family.
Local Christians have strongly condemned principal’s ‘inhuman behaviour’
After Senator Sherry Rehman highlighted the incident during a session in the Senate of Pakistan, Chairman of the Senate of Pakistan, Senator Raza Rabbani
ordered an inquiry into the attack but few humanitarians in Pakistan believe much will come of the enquiry, as previous similar responses have had
Leader of the House Raja Muhammad Zafarul told the House that he had received an initial report regarding the incident. He said that the report failed
to satisfy him and so he directed the Executive District Officer to meet the Christian girl and her parents himself and then report back to him.
A local police official, Muhammad Afzal, said they had not received a complaint but that action would be taken if a grievance were filed. Thus far no corrective
action has been taken.
As is usual in such situations the family have gone into hiding after several threats that a blasphemy allegation would be laid against them.
Our BPCA officers have met with the family on Monday 15th November. They also visited the local how we could help. In the meanwhile we
ask for Christian brothers and sisters to pray for the family. The family require financial support to help with their current relocation whilst
in hiding, due to them receiving several threats. Until it is known how the government and the school will respond to the attack we will not help the
family initiate a legal challenge for justice, however we call for Christian prayers into this situation.
Wilson Chowdhry, Chairman of the BPCA, said:
“We are often asked why Christians are so illiterate with only 7% attaining an adequate level of literacy. Where here you have a prime example of
the bullying, harassment and violence young Christians face daily. This hatred is top down and throughout educational establishments
and leaves Christians demoralised and subjugated. This alarming situation is exacerbated with a figure of 700 Christian girls abducted, raped and forced
into Islamic marriage per year, the majority of whom are kidnapped after school after joining Muslim girls on a trip out. The national curriculum
fuels the hatred towards minorities, by caricaturing and demonising minorities. Under such hostility what chance is there for minorities to educate
their next generation?”
Learn more about the discrimination and persecution in Pakistani schools by purchasing our report (click here)
Please give what you can to help Sara and other Christians suffering persecution in Pakistan. Your gift can be sent using these bank details:
Sort Code: 20-44-22
Account number: 43163318
Ref: Love for Sara Bibi
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BRITISH PAKISTANI CHRISTIAN ASSOCIATION is a trading name for BRITISH PAKISTANI CHRISTIANS LTD which is a charity entered onto the Register of Charities with the Registered Charity Number 1163363
With your support we hope to change the lives of millions of Pakistani Christians.
BPCA provides food parcels
Shamim Masih with the family
The entrance to the school where Sara was cruelly tortured.