September 1, 2023
The Lahore High Court, in an Order issued on Thursday, August 31, barred the authorities from changing the structure of the Ahmadiyya places of worship.
Justice Tariq Saleem Sheikh in his Judgement in the case titled Imran Hameed etc Vs The State etc vide Order dated 10.04.2023 has clearly laid down in Paragraph 16 of the Judgement that Section 298-B and 298-C of the PPC do not mandate the structures of the Ahmadiyya places of worship built before the Ordinance 20 of 1984 to be razed or altered.
In response, the Ahmadi community spokesperson Salimudddin lauded the step saying that it was a positive development in light of what has been happening recently.
“The implementation of the judgment remains to be seen and we are hopeful that the authorities would follow through with this decision,” he said.
The Human Rights Commission of Pakistan (HRCP) also welcomed the decision.
Amir Mehmood said that the Ahmadi persecution had reached unprecedented heights especially over the past few months.
On August 29, 2023 police along with the authorities defaced sacred wordings from an Ahmadi worship place in Shadiwal and Chooknawali, District Gujrat.
The police defaced the sacred writings from the place of worship in Gujrat on 29th Aug by applying black paint, after which they demolished the sacred wordings with a hammer and took the debris away with them.
“It’s a common practice now that the police instead of protecting the Ahmadis, are putting pressure on Ahmadis and are desecrating their worship places themselves. They often even ask the Ahamdis to desecrate their worship places themselves.”
Mehmood said, the caretaker Prime Minister of Pakistan Anwaar Ul Haq Kakar had mentioned the Ahmadis during his speech in Jaranwala after the incident there, and had promised that the State would protect the rights of the vulnerable. However since 21st Aug, 2023 three Ahmadi Worship Places have been desecrated by officials.