Punjab Government Pledges to Restore Churches and Homes Damaged During Jaranwala Violence

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Punjab caretaker Chief Minister Mohsin Naqvi has committed to restoring the churches and homes that were ransacked and torched during the recent violence in Jaranwala within the next three to four days. A mob of hundreds attacked and damaged five churches and the residences of Christians in the area. Naqvi condemned the violence, describing it as anti-Islam and against the teachings of the Holy Prophet. He further called for a plan to prevent such incidents in the future and urged religious leaders to spread the message of the Holy Quran.

The Punjab government has established a high-level inquiry committee to investigate the incident, in line with the directives of Caretaker Prime Minister Anwaarul Haq. The police have made over 100 arrests, and more than 600 people have been booked in two terror cases related to the violence.

In a press conference held in Lahore, Pakistan Ulema Council (PUC) Chairman Hafiz Tahir Ashrafi expressed deep regret for the violence and apologized to the Christian community. Ashrafi called for a speedy trial of the perpetrators and demanded the immediate restoration of the affected churches and homes. He also urged the interim prime minister to visit the damaged sites to send a message that Muslims in Pakistan are not associated with such acts of violence.

The Punjab police have filed two FIRs (First Information Reports) detailing the violence and listing the charges against the individuals involved. The FIRs invoke sections of the Anti-Terrorism Act, the Pakistan Penal Code, and the Punjab Sound Systems (Regulation) Act, 2015, among others, to ensure proper legal action against the accused.

The violence in Jaranwala erupted following allegations of desecration of the Holy Quran. Rumors spread rapidly, and a mob gathered outside the house of two Christian brothers who were accused of the act. The mob set their house on fire, leading to a series of violent incidents in the area. Churches were attacked, homes were burnt, and a Christian cemetery and the office of the local assistant commissioner were vandalized.

The Punjab government has taken immediate action to restore peace and security in Jaranwala. Chief Minister Mohsin Naqvi has promised that the government will rectify the damages caused to the churches and Christian homes and prevent any future instances of violence. The government’s efforts, along with the cooperation of religious leaders and law enforcement agencies, aim to ensure the safety and well-being of all communities in the region.

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