On Friday, November 13, 2009, the sun came up with new hopes in the lives of 59 Christians in Pakistan after the Pakistani-based Christian organization, “Life for All,” had made a determined effort to give these people their lives back, reports Xavier Patras William, special to ASSIST News Service.
The imprisoned Christians, who have been in various jails in Pakistan, got the welcome news of their freedom after hard work made by Mr. Rizwan Paul, President “Life for All,” who had presented a petition to Mr. Asif Ali Zardari, President of Pakistan, for the pardon of these Christians who he stated had been “falsely accused of minor crimes.”
The President reviewed the petition and approved the release of the prisoners who had been accused of minor crimes, and he vowed to review the release of other prisoners after reviewing the nature of their crimes.
The prisoners that were freed had been incarcerated in Adyala Jail, Rawalpindi; Kot Lakhpat Jail, Lahore; Sialkot Jail, Sialkot; as well as Peshawar Jail and the Karachi Jail.
Now they are free, and can breathe and move freely.
Extremely emotional scenes were seen outside the jails when the prisoners were released. Family members were present to greet their loved ones and they thanked “Life for All” for their efforts.
Representatives from “Life for All” were present at the respective jails to receive the released. They took the record of the released and then handed over them over to their families.
However, there are still more than 2,500 Christians in jails all over Pakistan who cannot afford the legal assistance for their release. There are many church-based and Christian/Muslim civil society organizations who claim to provide legal aid assistance to Christians and other poor people, but the truth is that the poor in Pakistan are implicated in false cases and end up in jail for years.
“Life for All” did not get any local / foreign aid for the release of these Christians.
Rizwan stressed that the Christian organizations “need to work together for the development of the community” in Pakistan.
Report from the Christian Telegraph