'Evicted Christian families getting no help from Pak govt'

 Four Christian families forced to leave their homes in Pakistan's Punjab province after a member of the minority community married a Muslim woman are yet to get any help from authorities in their efforts to resettle in their hometown.

The members of the families were beaten and forced out of their homes in Sargodha district last year. They are still knocking at the doors of authorities and the judiciary to help them resettle.

"We have written to the Chief Justice, Chief Minister and police chief to help us get back our looted property but none of them addressed our grievances," Nazir Masih, the elder member of the Christian families, told PTI.

"We are forced to live in slums while the local parliamentarian of the PML-N is patronising a Muslim group that beat us and evicted us from our properties," he alleged.

Masih, a resident of a village in Sargodha located 200 km from Lahore, said his nephew Ansar Masih married a Muslim woman named Muneza. Ansar left the area after the marriage.

"The local Muslims tortured me and other members of Ansar's family and looted our houses and shops. Later they asked us to leave if they want to remain alive. They occupied our houses and shops," he alleged.

Yesterday, the Human Liberation Commission Pakistan (HLCP) organised a protest outside Lahore Press Club and demanded that the PML-N government in Punjab should help the four families.

HLCP chairman Aslam Pervaiz Sahotra alleged PML-N lawmaker Zulfiqar Bhatti was patronising those who evicted the Christians.

"How shameful it is that even after the passage of a year, the culprits who maltreated women and children and expelled them from their village have not been arrested and no steps taken to ensure the return of the Christians to their village," he said.

The opposition raised the plight of these families in both the national and Punjab assemblies but the government did not do anything practical, Sahotra said.

The HLCP has written to the UN to take notice of atrocities against Christians and other minorities, he said.

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