The year was 1997. Bishop John Joseph, Pakistan’s first Punjabi bishop, led a rally of about 10,000 people on Aug. 11 to demand implementation of the historic speech of the nation’s founding father Mohammad Ali Jinnah.
“You are free, you are free to go to your temples. You are free to go to your mosques or any other places of worship in this state of Pakistan. You may belong to any religion or caste or creed that has nothing to do with the business of the state,” Jinnah announced in his speech to the nation.
The rally, which started at the bishop’s house in Faisalabad, was also joined by veteran fighter pilot Cecil Chaudhry and Shahbaz Bhatti, head of Pakistan’s Christian Liberation Front party. All three were later charged with high treason.