Pakistan in the time of Christmas

Pakistan in the time of Christmas
Pakistan in the time of Christmas
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The News Minute | December 24, 2014 | 11.30 pm IST

With less than two percentage Christian population, in Pakistan too Christmas is celebrated with the same energy and joy as is done elsewhere. And it is not just the Christians who celebrate. The Muslims also join them.

Annaseema, the five-year-old daughter of the Peshimans wrote a letter to Santa early December saying that she had been a good girl all through the year. She asked for a Mermadia doll as gift and also for her younger sister who was “too small to write,” a report in NBC News said.

Though being Muslims, her father said that they observed the day as a holiday because “it made sense.”

Come December kiosks spring up in every town. They sell all Christmas goodies like the Christmas tree, Santa masks, etc. To cater to the Muslim crowd, shops also sell non-alcoholic eggnog, as alcohol is prohibited in Islam.

Imran Masih, a thirty-five-year-old Christian who runs a kiosk is happy that he gets good business. “The politics of Osama [bin Laden] have overtaken by Santa Claus!,” he says.

Christmas is called the “Bara Din,” which means the big day in Urdu and people wish each other saying “Bara Din Mubarrak Ho.” December 25 is celebrated not only as the birth date of Lord Jesus, but also of the country’s Father, Quaid-i-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah. The Santa Claus is called “Christmas Baba!”

In Lahore, from the St. Anthony’s church to the Cathedral, the huge procession that happens every year with much enthusiasm takes hours to reach.

However, the Christian minority have a tough time in Pakistan usually. The laws of blasphemy are used to target them and they live under fear.

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