Aid announced for the family of murdered Christian couple

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Lahore, Nov 7: Pakistan has announced financial aid of Rs 5 million and 10 acres of land for the family of the Christian couple burnt alive by a frenzied mob for allegedly desecrating the Koran, media reports said.

Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif visited the family yesterday and announced a compensation of Rs 5 million (USD 48,781) as compensation as well as 10 acres of land.

The Chief Minister also announced that the government will take care of the couple's three children and provide for their education and well-being, the Dawn online reported.

The horrific crime took place on November 4 at the village of Kot Radha Kishan of Kasur district, some 50 kilometres from Lahore.

Police has already arrested 50 villagers and charged nearly 660 villagers, who were believed to be part of the mob that beat the couple to death.

Among those arrested was the owner of the brick kiln where 31-year-old Shama, who was pregnant at the time of the incident, and her husband Shahzad Masih, 35, worked as bonded labourers.

Blasphemy charges are punishable by death in the Muslim-majority Pakistan, but are often used to persecute the countries' minorities.

Christians make up about four per cent of Pakistan's population.

The cold-blooded murder of the Christian couple had attracted global headlines with Amnesty International asking Pakistan to bring to justice those responsible for the crime.

PTI

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