RENEWED calls were made yesterday for a clampdown on sectarian violence after a study showed Catholics were twice as likely as Protestants to suffer abuse and a pub packed with Celtic supporters was attacked by scores of football hooligans.

The Crown Office study of prosecutions under new anti-sectarianism legislation found in 63% of cases the victims were Catholics, and 29% were Protestants.

Joseph Devine, the Bishop of Motherwell, one of Scotland's most senior Catholics, blamed sectarian marches organised by the Orange Order for much of the violence and called on the Scottish Executive to introduce tighter regulations.

The attack, on a pub in the Merchant City, Glasgow, oc-curred soon after the weekend Old Firm game. A group of about 60 youths, described as ''football casuals'' burst into the Locomotiv bar in Bell Street, uprooting tables and chairs and attacking customers.

Many of the customers were women. They had earlier been watching live television coverage of the game at Ibrox, which Rangers won 2-0.

The gang's attack occurred after they were denied entry to O'Neill's bar across the street after stewards hurriedly shut the doors.

Witnesses said the gang were not wearing football colours. One said: ''There was no provocation. They seemed to be on the look-out for trouble.''

The group fled before police arrived and no arrests were made. There were no injuries.

Police said it had no evidence the attack was sectarian-related. Nineteen arrests were made in and around the game at Ibrox - one for racial breach of the peace.

The Crown Office study showed 450 people have been charged with religious hatred since the crime of religious aggravation was introduced in June last year. Under the law, a person who commits a crime such as assault or breach of the peace can have an element of bigotry added to the charge.

A detailed review of 108 cases found 68 in which Catholics suffered sectarian abuse, compared with 31 where Protestants were targeted. It also revealed 14% of offences were related to football and 15% were linked to sectarian marches.

Most of the offences reviewed took place in Glasgow (54%) and Lanarkshire (22%), but the bigotry was not restricted to the west of Scotland - 10% were in the Lothian and Borders area, and at least one person was charged in every other police force area in Scotland, except Highland.

Bishop Devine said: ''That almost two-thirds of such crimes are directed against Catholics who comprise just 17% of the population, is both alarming and saddening.''

He has asked an executive-founded commission, led by Sir John Orr, former chief constable of Strathclyde Police, to curb the marching season. He also wants a requirement of one month's notice for any march application to local authorities, instead of the current one week.

Donald Gorrie, Liberal Democrat MSP for Central Scotland, who led the campaign to have bigotry recognised in Scottish law, said: ''Contrary to the views of many academics, the figures show there is still a problem. The law itself won't solve the problem. But hopefully it will draw attention to it and help to change people's attitudes.''

Ian Wilson, grand master of the Orange Lodge of Scotland, said he would be surprised if one side was more guilty than another of sectarian abuse. He added: ''There is no doubt Scottish society has a degree of sectarian intolerance. However, it is my experience this has lessened in the past 40 years.''