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Two Christian Brothers Murdered, Six Seriously Injured by Muslim Neighbours in Okara City, Pakistan

Haroon Masih son of Mukhtar Masih
Two Christian Brothers Murdered, Six Seriously Injured by Muslim Neighbours in Okara City, Pakistan

Haroon Masih son of Mukhtar Masih

Haroon Masih son of Mukhtar Masih

Yaqoob Masih son of Mukhtar Masih

According to details of the First Investigation Report lodged by Indriyas Masih, Haroon Masih and Yaqoob Masih cultivate land as tenants, a common practice in Pakistan as many don’t own their own land. Irrigation water is provided by the respective irrigation departments by turn. On October 8, about 5 PM, both the brothers were busy watering their fields when the alleged assailants named Muhammad Abbas, Babar, Mustafa, Shafqat, Gulzar, Qadir, Nusruallah, Noor, Maqbool, Abbass, Hassan and Azhar along with five more persons from Chak No 2A GD arrived there. They were armed with guns and pistols and started shouting at the two brothers, threatening to teach them a lesson
for taking land near them. Upon seeing this, both the brothers shouted and called for their community fellows. Upon hearing the noise, Shamaoon, Sheraz, Adeel, Taimoor and Nabeel also arrived on the scene. Muhammad Abbass opened fire on Haroon and the bullet hit his neck. Babar injured Yaqoob Masih with a bullet in his head. Gulzar and Qadir also opened fire and again hit Yaqoob, Indriyas, Taimoor, Shamaoon and Adeel, injuring them critically. Meanwhile other villagers, hearing the gunshots and the commotion, also arrived on the scene. The alleged assailants ran away continuing to wave and fire their weapons. Yaqoob Masih succumbed to his injuries on the spot; Haroon Masih died in hospital after a three-hour fight for his life. Indriyas, Taimoor, Shamaoon, Nabeel and Adeel were severely injured and are in still in critical condition. The bullets in their bodies have not yet been removed. Even though the case has been registered, so far none of the alleged persons have been arrested. The situation in Okara is very tense and Christian families are in fear because of the threats. The families of the injured and deceased are also in great distress. The family and villagers wanted to place the dead bodies on the highway as a protest against this cruelty; however, the administration, through a heavy deputation of policemen in the area, forced them to bury the bodies. While visiting the injured in the hospital, CAPC’s representative was told that the hospital administration has not paid much attention to their treatment. Mr. Bhatti then met the medical superintendent and discussed the medical neglect reported by the family. He requested treatment of the injured regardless of religion, and to remove the bullets from their bodies. The superintendent assured him he would investigate the matter and attend to those injured. Mukhtar Masih is a 65-year-old man, who had five sons and a daughter. He is understandably devastated after losing two of his sons, Haroon Masih and Yaqoob Masih. Haroon was a laborer and had four children.

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