Sohail Johnson, Coordinator, SLMP, has moved application for construction of prayer rooms for Christian inmates in Punjab jails. Mr. Johnson appeals other Christians also to forward this request to relevant offices
29 May 2006
The Home Secretary
Subject: APPLICATION FOR CONSTRUCTION OF PRAYER ROOMS FOR
CHRISTIAN PRISONERS IN THE PRISONS OF PUNJAB PROVINCE.
No doubt Christian community of Pakistan has great passion for the wealth and progress of Pakistan. We are very thankful to Baba-A-Nation Mr. Quaid-a-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah for honored us by giving White Color in the Flag of Pakistan. The biggest minority of Pakistan, Christian community liked to live in Pakistan after partition, Christians played their creative role for the progress of Pakistan. Today, present government and people from different kinds of fields admitted the services of Christian community, especially in Health and Education Field. Our great leader founder of Pakistan declared minorities as a Holy Trust of Pakistan. Our Muslim brothers are also symbol of peace and harmony. Present government gave a great confidence of independence by conducting joint elections. Christian community feels proud for being a equal part of country.
But when we see the condition of Christian Prisoners in the jails through our surveys, we can see the following problems.
In central jail Gujranwala there is a Big Mosque situated in which about 2000 Muslim prisoners can offer prayer easily. Loud speakers are displayed so that Muslim prisoners listen the voice of 'Azan' (the voice of preacher for pray) more over rooms and small mosques are fixed in five different blocks for worship for Muslim prisoners.
Just like it in Faisalabad District Jail, there is a Big Mosque in the circle of the jail for the congregational prayer of the Muslim prisoners.
In District Jail Lahore there are more than 17 Mosques and Two 'Amam Bargahs' (the place of worship for Ahal-A-Tashehi, a Muslim Caste) in about all Mosques the loud speakers are fixed. Like this all Jails consisted many mosques for our Muslim brothers.
No doubt these mosques are playing affective role for the correction and mending of the
sinful and criminal lives of Muslim Prisoners and it provides great opportunity for their
repentance, perhaps Mosques are very helpful to the Government for build up peaceful society.
There is only one Small Prayer room in Central Jail Lahore out of all the Jails of province Punjab and in Faisal Abad there is a Small Plot fixed for Christian prisoners for prayer. Moreover a small store is given to Christian prisoners for prayer in District Jail Rawalpindi Adiala.
While in rest of 28 Jails there is no any place fixed where Christian prisoners could offer their prayer according to their faith respectfully. In Christianity there is an essential part of worship to sing praise songs by playing musical instruments. Christian prisoners are allowed to worship with playing musical instruments only in Central Jail Lahore out of 31 jails of province Punjab.
Christian prisoners are detained separately in deferent cells and blocks and cannot offer prayer and worships together.
We can see the Christian prisoners find proper place for worship by caring Holy Bible under their armpits and mates on their heads, once in a week on Sunday for few hours.
Usually Christian prisoners compel to worship at the stores, courtyards of the jails and hospitals or in the different cells separately. Sometimes Christian prisoners offer their prayers at the wards of hospital, which is fixed for addicted prisoners. Where the addicted prisoners disturb the atmosphere of worship by using filthy language and passing dirty sentences.
Christian prisoners cannot pray in rainy, hot and cold days due to unavailability of prayer rooms and it causes them to involve in useless activities, which gives bitter results.
Most of the time, they are not allowed to worship according to their faith by playing musical instruments, which ceased the religious freedom.
Being a citizen of Pakistan, Christian Community also has right to change and correct their lives. Therefore Prayer Room are basic and essential need, where Christian prisoners can gather daily and think about their lives before God and can change their lives positively.
Application here by seeks your kind order to build Prayer Rooms for Christian prisoners in all the Jails of province Punjab, so that, Christian prisoners can be released from inferiority complex and can be useful part of Pakistani society.
Sharing Life Ministry Pakistan
1. Chief Justice of Supreme Court
2. Chief Justice of Lahore High Court Lahore
3. Chief Ministry of Punjab
4. Minister Prisons Province Punjab
5. Inspector General of Prisons Punjab
6. Interior Minister
7. Minister of Minority Affairs
8. Minister of Religious Affairs
9. Governor Punjab
10. Core Commander Lahore