Police tortured a Christian to death in Gujranwala Punjab

Through sources Christians’ True Spirit (CTS) came to know about the killing of Liaquat Masih in Police custody. Liaquat Masih died on Wednesday January 13, 2016 midnight at about 2:00 am during the police investigation and torture in a theft case in the Rahwali Cantt Police Station Gujranwala.

Liaquat-Masih1Next morning police took the dead body of Liaquat Masih for the post-mortem in the District Hospital Gujranwala, and declared Heart Attack as the cause of death and the doctors duly mentioned heart attack as a cause of death in the post-mortem report of Liaquat Masih.

Following the information Immediately Mr. Sarfraz Karamat District Coordinator Gujranwala reached at Village Klasskaye Kot Proya, about 20 kilometers from Gujranwala city. Mr. Karamat saw the dead body of the victim Liaquat Masih and met his mourning wife Rubina Bibi, son Khurram aged 22 and 3 other children. Mr. Sarfraz Karamat reported the following facts collected through the locals and family statements!

Liaquat Masih aged 45 resident of Klasskaye Kot Paroya District Gujranwala worked as driver at the house of S A Hameed, President Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaaf in Gujranwala of last 15 years. He was hardworking and trustable servant of S A Hameed for last 15 years.

On November 15, 2015 Raza Hameed s/o S A Hameed lodged theft complain against unknown, in the Police Station Rahwali Cantt, on November 15, 2015 and get registered a case FIR no.570/2015 offence under section 457 and 380 of Pakistan Penal Code (PPC) steeling for trespassing the house at midnight and steeling valuable things.

Statement of Rubina Bibi w/o Liaquat Masih:

12539951_679739905501414_1075741126_nRubina Informed CTS that S A Hameed and his son Raza Hameed accused Liaquat Masih for steeling valuable material including watches, jewelry, US Dollars (currency of United States) and Saudi Riyal (currency of Saudi Arabia) etc cost 2 Karor. He also blamed

Rubina Bibi wife of Liaquat Masih and Khuram Masih aged 22 his elder son for theft. Hameed has been beating and torturing Liaquat Masih, his son and other servants time to time himself and forced them to admit the robbery. During investigation he beat severely another Christian couple Rubina and Babar Masih who do cleaning at his house and inquired with the cook who left job already since six months. After due formalities S A Hameed released all servants from the case but did not released Liaquat and Khurram and have been investigating the matter privately at his place. Later Raza Hameed asked police to start investigation with servants of S A Hameed, including Liaquat Masih and his son. Police set freed all servants but continually and repeatedly tortured Liaquat Masih and Khurram Masih and kept them at police lockup for weeks in illegal detention.

Rubina Bibi asked help from local influenced Nasir Cheema (a local political personality and other local influenced political leadership to help his son and husband to get release from the police custody. S A Hameed did not care of any influenced approached him to be sympatric to innocent poor servants. Nasir Cheema asked a lawyer named Imran Arif Khokher advocate high court based Gujranwala to deal this matter legally as he wanted to help victims at this poor time. Imran Arif Khokher advocate filed pre-arrest bails of Liaquat Masih and Khurram Masih in the Session’s Courts Gujranwala, after two or three day to day hearings they got pre arrest bails on January 13, 2016 till January 19, 2016. Liaquat and Khurram get released from the two months illegal detention of police.

Statement of Khurram s/o Liaquat Masih:

12540150_679739852168086_725630772_nKhurram informed Ms. Katherine Sapna Director CTS over telephone that on January 13, 2016 after bails they were on the way to home when police again arrested both and took them to the Rahwali Cantt Police Station. Police constables started severe torture to Khurram on the order of the Station House Officer (SHO) while Raza Hameed s/o S A Hameed was present in the police station to encourage police for the torture and killing of Liaquat. Raza Hameed also gave a big amount as bribery to the SHO, Khurram stated.

He was deeply grieved and added that Police hanged naked Liaquat Masih and tortured him inhumanly and cruelly with wooden roads till death on January 14, 2016 at 2:00 am (midnight). Khurram informed CTS Director, he cried and begged before the SHO for the life of his father but no one heard his cries. Police killed his father before his eyes and threatened him for the same consequences if he disclosed the names of police officials who tortured him and his father, he added.

The local Christians demonstration:

Liaquat-Masih2On January 14, in the morning police took the dead body of Liaquat Masih to the District Hospital Gujranwala to conduct Post-mortem and asked doctors to declare heart attack as a cause of death. Police also published statement in the News papers about the death of Liaquat Masih with heart attack. The locals informed Mr. Sarfraz Karamat coordinator CTS about protest demonstration they staged the same day at the front of Cantt Police Station.

Police beaten up the people gathered for the demonstration without caring women and children and asked to leave the place. They also shared inhuman behavior of police towards protesters and open threats for severe consequences by police. The women shared their wounds and injuries, they got by police in resistance.

On January 15, 2016 dead body of Liaquat Masih was handed over to the family, Khurram Masih was brought to home in police custody for the funeral and burial of his father, as the police wanted to take him back to the Police Station after rite.

Christian Leadership action:

On January 15, 2016 Christian Leadership including Ms. Shonila Ruth Member Punjab Assembly (Pakistan Tehrek-e-Insaaf) gathered at the office of Capital Police Officer (CPO) Gujranwala Region and asked for the immediate legal action against the responsible Raza Hameed, S A Hameed president PTI Gujranwala, SHO Rahwali Cantt Police Station and other police officers of the same police station who killed Liaquat Masih, and lodge a Legal Case FIR under section 302 according to the Pakistan Penal Code (PPC). The same day CPO released order for the registration of the case FIR and for the immediate arrest of nominated.

Victim’s Family detail:

Deceased left a young wife Rubina Bibi aged about 38, school going two sons and two daughter including Khurram Masih the eldest one, aged 22, student of intermediate First Year. Rubina Bibi is house wife and never been at the place of S A Hameed (accused).

Highlights of CTS and concerns:

  • Liaquat Masih and Khurram Masih were not nominated accused of theft or robbery in the case FIR 570/2015 registered by Raza Hameed.
  • Police kept Liaquat and his son in illegal detention and tortured physicall
  • The lawyer filed pre-arrest bails on behalf of Liaquat and Khurram, instead he filed habeas petition for the recovery of the déten
  • The poor victims could not get access to the on time proper legal help and become the victim of police inhumanity and cruelty.
  • How the police could get arrested Liaquat and Khurram on January 13, while they were on the pre-arrest bails till January 19, 2016.
  • There must be maladministration and interest of bribery that police killed poor Liaquat Masih.

This is not the first case when Punjab Police killed a Christian in police torture. Therefore CTS appeals Punjab Government to take serious notice on target killing of Christians by police as we can no more tolerate these kind of advances of Police and ask Prime Minister Pakistan and Chief Minister Punjab for the justice.

Action of CTS:

Katherine Sapna Director CTS, urge Chief Minister to take notice of the target killing of innocent Christians previously and presently. CM should take Legal action against the responsible police officers and do Justice with the mourning family/dependents/children and must pay compensation to the legal heirs, she added.

Secondly, Christians’ True Spirit (CTS) writing letters to the Prime Minister Pakistan, Chief Minister Punjab, Federal Minister for Interior, Federal Minister of Law and Human Rights Ministry of Law, Justice and Human Rights Ministry, Governor of Punjab, Minister of Law, Chief Justice, Supreme Court of Pakistan and Chief Justice Lahore High Court, to voice its deep concern regarding the killing of Liaquat Masih and physical torture to Khurram Masih in the illegal detention of police, to take immediate action for arrest of culprits including SHO, IO and other police officers at Rahwali Cantt Police Station and do justice.

Reported by: CTS Fact finding Team
Dated: January 15, 2016