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Nationalization 'undermined Pakistan's Christian students'

Low literacy levels among Christians and weakened church institutions blamed on government-run schools

Kamran Chaudhry, Lahore

Kamran Chaudhry, Lahore

Published: August 17, 2020 09:25 AM GMT

Updated: August 17, 2020 09:27 AM GMT

Nationalization 'undermined Pakistan's Christian students'

Father Bonnie Mendes (third from right) launches the CSJ research with Church of Pakistan Bishop Irfan Jamil of Lahore. (Photo: Kamran Chaudhry)

New research has blamed nationalization of Pakistan's private schools for low literacy levels among the Christian community, weakened church institutions and for creating fear among them.

Published by the Center for Social Justice (CSJ), an advocacy group for minorities, a report titled “Lessons from the Nationalization of Education in 1972” claims 118 missionary institutions remained nationalized by June 2020. 

“Three out of five colleges nationalized were still under government control. Twenty-five percent of the Catholic Church’s schools were yet to be denationalized. All schools belonging to the Salvation Army and Methodist Church were still under government control,” the report stated.

“Some of the schools were sharing the same compounds as churches, hence boundary walls had to be built to separate the two at the expense of the churches. This also meant adopting inconvenient logistical arrangements.”

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