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ICC Note:

A Christian man in Pakistan was ordered by his boss at a school to become a janitor because he was not fit to serve water to Muslims. Originally, the Christian was hired as the ‘water man’ at the MC Girls High School in Pakistan. Due to his religious identity, many of the school’s Muslims, including the headmistress, viewed the man as unclean and unfit to serve anything to Muslims. Christians across Pakistan face intense discrimination because of their religious identity. Often, they are relegated to taking only the dirtiest jobs including sanitary work, daily labor, and working at brick kilns. 

2/11/2016 Pakistan (Asia News) – Qaisar Jahan, a Christian man who was hired as a ‘water man’ by the MC Girls High School in Partab Nagar (Faisalabad), has been the victim of religious discrimination.

“You are Christian and no one in the school wants to get a glass of water from you,” the school’s headmistress told him. Because of this, she ordered him to do the janitorial work. However, Jahan refused and filed a complaint.

The story began in May 2015 when the previous ‘water man’ at the MC Girls High School passed away. The school’s headmistress, Najma Naheed, a Muslim, sent a request to the Education District officer (EDO) for a new employee. The choice fell on Jahan, who began working in November.

However, towards the end of December, Ms Naheed started to put pressure on the new “water man” to do the janitorial work instead. On 6 February, she wrote a letter of complaint to the EDO.

Since he was not being allowed to do the work for which he had been hired, Jahan turned to Lala Robin Daniel, a Christian political and social activist, who yesterday filed a complaint with the EDO for religious discrimination.

“The headmistress’s act of discrimination is unethical and violates the code of human behavior,” Daniel said. It also violates “Articles 11 and 27 of the Constitution of Pakistan and Conventions 105 and 111 of the International Labor Organization.”

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