Blasphemy Laws in Pakistan are a major tool of persecution against religious minorities

pakistan-fireHow Long must the persecution of Christians continue?

Global News Centre

(ISLAMABAD) Today, Advocate Sardar Mushtaq Gill, a Human Rights Defender and Chief of LEAD (Legal Evangelical Assistance Development) has received a number of phone calls by different persons.  Those persons have put one important question “Blasphemy Laws in Pakistan is a major tool of persecution against religious minorities.  How Long?

According to different sources,one more incident occurred of burning homes of Ahmadi Minority by a charged mob at late evening on Sunday, July 27th, in which three Ahmadis, including two minors, killed in Gujranwala.

This tragic incident happened on the pretext that an Ahmadi youth had defaced a picture of the Khana Ka’bah (the Sacred Mosque) on Facebook.

According to Ahmadiyya Times News Watch Int’l Desk’s facts of the incident…

“This is a new way of making involved the user of social media in blasphemy cases about which we have fears and concerns that it will not be ended.”

He further added that LEAD is providing legal assistance in a number of blasphemy cases of Ahmadi religious minority group in Pakistan.

“We have launched an International Campaign against Blasphemy Law for its repeal because under these blasphemy law we all religious minorities in Pakistan are not safe and feel insecure every time and on every point because of happening of such like incidents,” Gill said.

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Last year in 2013, a fully charged mob of almost 4,000 religious zealots gathered around Joseph Colony, a Christian-dominated area and burnt more than 180 homes of Christians including two Churches after making false leveled of blasphemy against a Christian man.

In November 2010, Asia Bibi, a Christian mother, was convicted under section 295 C PPC and sentenced to death.  Since from the accusation to death conviction,she is languishing in jail and is awaiting her appeal decision which is now pending in the Lahore High Court.  Her appeal hearing is being cancelled consecutively five times.The last one time, it was postponed when the counsel for the complainant did not turn up.

On this disappointing situation Advocate Sardar Mushtaq Gill, Chief of LEAD, stepped forwarded and decided to apply law to seek relief from the court for setting date of hearing in her appeal because the law has given remedy to the accused or convicted to seek relief by using and applying this provision of law.

On June 24, 2014 LEAD filed petition in Lahore High Court for the re-fixation of earlier hearing of Asia Bibi’s appeal case which was heard on June 25th.  The Court ordered to office of Lahore High Court to explore the scope of fixation of appeal hearing of Asia Bibi near future and ordered for submitting report within three days which was submitted on June 27th.  Again the petition fixed for June 30th, the Court told the lawyers that according to the report, submitted by the Office of LHC, the appeal of Asia Bibi proposed to be fixed for September 9, 2014 and on this order of the Court the petition disposed off after the lawyers’ consent.

“As we have pledged to do all we can to help free Asia Bibi, we at LEAD will do and our work will speak”, Gill said.

Our tireless efforts and struggle be continue for rule of law,religious liberty and freedom; and campaign to repeal blasphemy law.  Our request to human rights organisations to support our work morally and physically and stand with us.We request to pray for our safety and for wisdom and encourage our work with your heartily prayers.

In Solidarity,

LEAD

www.leadfamily.blogspot.com

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