ASIA/PAKISTAN - Shots fired against a Catholic school in Lahore, three injured

Friday, 17 April 2015

Lahore (Agenzia Fides) - This morning, gunmen opened fire on a school in Lahore, the "St Francis High School", a Catholic high school located in the district of Bahar, in the Anarkali area. This was reported by sources in the local Church to Agenzia Fides.
A student and two security guards were injured and were taken to hospital. The reasons of the attack have not yet been established, and investigations are being carried out. The authorities closed both the "St. Francis High School", and the "St Mary High School".
"The new attack witnesses the deterioration of the situation of Christians in Pakistan and spreads even more fear" says Christian lawyer Sardar Mushtaq Gill to Fides.
The "St Francis High School" was founded by the Catholic Church in 1842 and was the first Catholic school in Lahore. The Pakistani government nationalized the institute in 1972. The school is considered one of the best high schools in the city.
Of the 17 Catholic schools existing in Lahore, in 2004, with the leadership of Pervez Musharraf, 16 were returned to the Church, except the St Francis institute, due to a dispute over ownership of the land, because the Church was not able to demonstrate possession. The institute has been at the center of a legal controversy. In November 2014, the government returned it to the diocese of Lahore (see Fides 12/11/2014). (PA) (Agenzia Fides 17/04/2015)