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Pak cleric threatens pastor for drawing on verses from Quran

Last Updated: Thursday, May 24, 2012 - 19:43

Islamabad: A pastor, who drew verses from the Quran during his sermon in Pakistan`s Punjab province, has been abused by an Islamic cleric who also threatened to register a complaint against him for blasphemy, a media report said on Thursday.

The pastor had been invited by Christians at Data Zedka village in Sialkot district to deliver a sermon at a church on Saturday.

The cleric disrupted a mass at the church and threatened to register a complaint under the blasphemy law against the pastor for drawing on verses from the Quran during his sermon.

He abused the pastor and threatened to kill him, The Express Tribune reported. The cleric objected to the pastor reading Quranic verses during his sermon.

The cleric subsequently called police to the church. By the time police reached the church, the pastor had fled.

Police officials were able to "persuade" the cleric to go home after assuring him that action would be taken against the pastor, the report said.

The next day, the Christians apologised to the cleric, who insisted that the pastor should "confess to his crime" and publicly apologise for quoting from the Quran.

The cleric warned the Christians that they would be responsible for the consequences, local residents said.

The school teacher said the Christians had sent women to the cleric`s wife and mother to apologise.

However, the cleric was adamant that the pastor should apologise over a megaphone.

The school teacher further said that the Christians were apprehensive about an agitation by Muslims.

The cleric told the newspaper that the pastor had "tried to justify the Christian point of view by giving Quranic references".

He said his "blood started boiling" when he heard the pastor quoting the Quran.

"Yes, I abused them. I would have killed the pastor right there and then but I could not arrange for a weapon," he said.

The cleric said he had given an application to police, asking them to file an FIR for blasphemy against the pastor and the parish.

The police, however, told the cleric that they would ask the pastor to apologise.

"In case the pastor does not come, I will get the FIR registered," the cleric said. He claimed the police were "followers of the American agenda of protecting the Christians".

Station House Officer Khalid Dar denied receiving an application from the cleric. He said police were trying to "resolve the matter amicably" with the help of local residents.


First Published: Thursday, May 24, 2012 - 19:43

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