Hundreds of Muslims gathered to kill a Pakistani Christian family after they were accused of blasphemy.

But Aftab Masih, 42, his wife, and five children were saved from the perilous position when local Muslim clerics calmed the gathered crowd in Railway Colony, Wazirabad, and called the police.

Masih was accused of blasphemy after arguing with 18-year-old Zain Shah who had been trying to covert his two sons Akash, 12, and five-year-old Adnan to convert to Islam.

The boys had been allowed to take water from taps at the nearby mosque, but Zain told them that unless they converted they would be defiling the taps.

When Masih told Zain not to interfere, an argument broke out.

He told Zain that if Muslims had failed to convert Baba Guru Nanak, to Islam why would he continue bothering his children.

But Zain accused Masih of blasphemy, and soon his brother and father arrived to continue the fight with Masih.

By the evening a mob of around 300 men had gathered – armed with sticks and other weapons. This prompted local influential Muslims to call the police so the situation could be brought under control.

However, despite the police intervention, it was decided that the matter will be dealt with by Asif Hazarvi, leader of Jamiat Ulema-e-Pakistan (JUP).

Hazarvi asked that three for Masih and three from for Zain stayed, while others were sent out.

They were each asked to write statements. Afterwards Masih’s two witnesses escorted him home, but there were groups of angry men waiting for him and another Catholic priest who arrived in a car and urged him to leave.

Masih and his family have since been forced to leave the area.