Lahore: Punjab Chief Minister Muhammad Shahbaz Sharif has said that the whole nation has strongly condemned the reprehensible act committed against Christian community in Joseph Colony Badami Bagh and he once again apologizes to Christian brethren for this condemnable incident. He said that deterrent punishment will be awarded to the elements involved in the incident so that no one could dare to indulge in such inhuman act in future. He said that sixty houses have been handed over to the affected families in Joseph Colony after their repair while reconstruction of the remaining houses will also be completed within next seven days. He said that financial assistance of five lakh rupees per family has been paid to the affectees. He said that grievances of the Christian brethren will be redressed and collective efforts will be made for building a new Pakistan.
He was addressing Christian community during his visit to Joseph Colony Badami Bagh today. The Chief Minister inaugurated the completion of the work of repair of houses and renovation of churches in Joseph Colony. Senators Pervaiz Rashid, Kamran Michael, Pakistan Muslim League-N leaders Hamza Shahbaz Sharif, Pervaiz Malik, Malik Riaz, Members Provincial Assembly, Commissioner and District Coordination Officer Lahore, officers of District Administration and leaders of Christian community were also present. Secretary Communication & Works gave a briefing regarding rehabilitation work in Joseph Colony. Speaking on the occasion, Muhammad Shahbaz Sharif said that Christian community has played a commendable role for the development of Pakistan and promotion of education. He said that Christian brethren have equal rights under law and constitution of Pakistan and their protection is the responsibility of the state. He said that every Pakistani is grieved over the burning of houses in Joseph Colony and damage to the houses of the Christian brethren and fully shares their grief. He said that the provincial machinery was fully alert and rehabilitation work was immediately started in the colony. He said that 22 contractors and 400 labourers are participating in the rehabilitation work round the clock and besides 60 houses, two churches have also been repaired and renovated so far. He said that rehabilitation activities are speedily in progress with the cooperation of administration, political leaders and Christian brethren and will be completed within next seven days. He said that Christian community has equal right over Pakistan and the cruelty against Christian brethren should be condemned in the strongest terms. He said that Christian community has played a commendable role in Pakistan Movement as well as development of the country. He said that the whole nation is proud of courage and bravery displayed by Cecil Chaudhry of Pakistan Air Force in 1965 War. He said that Cecil Chaudhry is a national hero and his services in the defense of the country will always be remembered. The Chief Minister thanked his political colleagues, Secretary C&W Maj. (R) Azam Salman Khan, Director General LDA Ahad Cheema, District Coordination Officer Lahore Noor-ul-Amin Mengal and authorities of Solid Waste Management for actively participating in the rehabilitation work and prayed that they continue to work with the same spirit in the service of the people to earn their blessings. He said that rehabilitation activities have been carried out with sincerity and commitment. He hoped that Christian brethren will soon forget the incident and join their other Pakistani brethren in the efforts for progress and development of the country.
Earlier, the Chief Minister reviewed rehabilitation activities and inaugurated the newly repaired and renovated houses and churches. He also offered Dua on this occasion.