Medical staff at a hospital in Lahore, Pakistan, allegedly assaulted a Christian family seeking help for a pregnant relative. During the attack, Sunil Saleem, brother to the woman seeking aid, was severely beaten and later died as a result of his injuries.
On Monday, brothers Anil and Sunil Saleem, along with other relatives, brought their pregnant sister Kiran Kashif to the emergency maternity ward of Government Services Institute of Medical Sciences seeking help for her labor pains, according to the Morning Star News.
They went to see the doctor on duty, who refused to see Kashif. When the family protested against the rude behavior, the doctor physically assaulted Kashif, slapping her and trying to throw her on the floor, calling her a Chuhri, a derogatory term for Christian.
When other family members came to her aid, the doctor called for security and other medical staff to “teach these Christians a lesson.”
“Around 15 to 20 paramedical staff and security guards and eight to 10 young doctors, including Dr. Salman, Dr. Irfan, Dr. Hasan and Dr. Sahi lunged at us with iron rods, chairs, leather belts and other things and started beating us,” Anil Saleem said. “Sunil, a police constable in the National Highway and Motorway Police, tried his best to placate the assailants but they continued to beat him mercilessly, kicking and punching him in the groin and chest until he fell unconscious.”
The brutal assault continued until the police arrived. At that point, the attackers fled, but the medical staff refused to give aid to Sunil Saleem, who received life-threatening injuries. He passed away hours later. He was married with four children. The youngest is three months old.
The Christian family filed a police report against the hospital, whose staff denies that the incident took place and even accused the victim’s family of causing a riot on the premises.
Christian activist Napolean Qayyum blasted the hospital for their response to the incident and accused the Pakistan government, which is majority Muslim, of inaction.
“It pains to say this, but the Pakistani government has failed to make this country safe for its minority communities, especially Christians,” he told the News.