Fidelity bank banner Bayelsa State banner
Blasphemy: 3 sentenced to death for tearing religious poster

By Madeeha Anwar on 15/10/2017

Share on facebook Yahoo mail icon Gmail icon Share on Google+

Views: 1,461

•A pro-blasphemy march in Pakistan
•A pro-blasphemy march in Pakistan

A court in Pakistan’s Punjab province has sentenced three men of a minority religious group to death on charges of violating the country’s controversial blasphemy law.

Mubasher Ahmad, Ghulam Ahmed and Ehsan Ahmed were found guilty and convicted by the trial court Wednesday for insulting the prophet of Islam.

The men were tried under Section 295-B of Pakistan’s penal code, commonly referred to as the blasphemy law, which recommends either life imprisonment or the death penalty for anyone found guilty of deliberately insulting Islam.

The men were arrested in May 2014 in a remote village in Punjab province after residents filed a complaint with the police and accused the defendants of tearing down a religious poster.

Four men were arrested at the time. The fourth man, Khalil Ahmad, was shot dead by an angry man while in police custody just a few days after the incident.

Saleemuddin, a spokesperson for the Ahmadi community, told VOA that the charges against the defendants and the court’s verdict were unfair.

“The convicted men were trying to take down a poster, which had anti-Ahmadi slogans and text that urged the community to socially boycott the already persecuted Ahmadi community,” Saleemuddin said.

“We will challenge the trial court’s decision in high court,” he added.

Ahmadis consider themselves Muslims, but Pakistan’s state does not recognise them as such and labels them heretics. There are more than a half-million Ahmadis living in Pakistan under the constant threat of persecution.

The Ahmadi community “is one of the most mistreated communities in the country. They have had been a target of blasphemous charges, sectarian violence and target killings,” said Mehdi Hasan, a prominent human rights activist in Pakistan.

Ahmadis ‘a threat’

The death sentence for the three individuals came just a few days after Muhammad Safdar, a prominent member of the ruling party and son-in-law of ousted Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, publicly denounced Ahmadi community members as a threat to Pakistan and urged the country’s institutions not to hire them in the military or the civil service.

Safdar’s remarks stirred a debate in the country on the issue of minorities and their rights.

Pakistan Minister of the Interior Ahsan Iqbal, without mentioning Safdar by name, denounced the anti-minority rhetoric coming from politicians.

“It is tragic to see hate speech against minorities in National Assembly. We believe in inclusive Pakistan. Pakistan respects all minorities,” Iqbal said in a tweet.

Abuse of law

“Blasphemy is a very sensitive issue in Pakistan. We’ve seen several incidents where angry mobs killed those accused of committing blasphemy without giving them a right to face the trial,” human rights activist Hasan told VOA.

Rights groups say the controversial blasphemy law has often been abused to settle personal vendettas and disputes. Due process is often ceremonial, the rights activists add, and decisions are often informed by the growing religious intolerance in the country.

Even if courts do drop charges against defendants, mobs and local residents attack them, and law enforcement authorities look the other way in most cases, the activists charge.

Social media posts

Nadeem James, a Christian, was sentenced to death last month in Punjab after the court established that he sent a blasphemous poem to a friend via WhatsApp, an instant message application.

The Human Rights Commission of Pakistan in a recent report said 15 people were arrested on charges of blasphemy in 2016, including 10 Muslims and five members of religious minorities.

In April 2017, Mashaal Khan, a journalism student, was accused of posting blasphemous content online and was beaten to death by fellow students at Abdul Wali Khan University in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province.

Pakistan’s government is being scriticized for strictly enforcing the blasphemy laws.

In April 2017, the government used newspapers and mobile phone services to warn its citizens not to post or upload any blasphemous materials on social media.

The government has also reportedly encouraged people to report those who violate the blasphemy law. (VOA)

Source News Express

Posted 15/10/2017 12:29:24 PM

 

Share on facebook Yahoo mail icon Gmail icon Share on Google+


 

CLASSIFIED ADS

REVEALED: 3 natural ways to get stronger erections, last 25 minutes on bed, and increase manhood size without using drugs. Also, Natural Prostrate Enlargement Remedy.. Get In HERE...

 

You may also like...
2 oil chiefs docked over N7.3bn fraud

Ikpeazu flags off work on two more road...

Nude photo scandal: Prophet forced to undress in...

SANship as an instrument of grave injustice

Abduction of Dapchi school girls should never have...

NSCDC confirms Avengers’ attacks on Agip’s oilfield

Igbos not target of Boko Haram’s killing spree...

University VC accused of fraud languishes in prison...

Buhari working wonders despite inheriting empty purse —...

FG stops initial 10 per cent on N5m...

RIGHTSView: KADUNA’S YEAR OF UNCOMMON HARVEST

EFCC arrests brother to Cross River Governor over...

 

Latest News 2019: All set for Atiku's declaration for president Court fines hospital N.5m for detaining baby’s corpse, parents UNN set to export ginger to USA 2019 election: 8 PDP governorship aspirants opt for consensus in Kaduna Violence, late arrival of election materials characterise Osun APC guber primaries Forex: CBN flags off sale of Chinese Yuan Gunmen storm Zamfara market; kill 2, injure others NAF fighter aircraft neutralises fleeing Boko Haram terrorists Ekiti: Group slams HURIWA over call for sack of INEC Chairman South African police officers to face trial for killing Nigerian FG, States, LGs share N668.898b for May Protection of human rights, cardinal objective of Buhari administration — Minister

 

Most Read NUDE PHOTO OF OMOTOLA JALADE-EKEINDE surfaces online (363,153 views) Nigerian female sex addict opens up, says ‘I like it with both men and women’ (359,008 views) Shameless Genevieve Nnaji exposes breasts in public (287,404 views) Finally named: The full list of friends of Nigerian female sex addict who prowled Facebook (235,852 views) OLUMBA OLUMBA OBU (the one who called himself God) IS DEAD (215,139 views) Igbo scholar disgraces Femi Fani-Kayode •Demolishes claims on Igbo/Yoruba history with facts and figures (212,871 views) Breaking News: POPULAR REVEREND CONVERTS TO ISLAM in Kaduna (Nigeria) (186,950 views) OBJ’s son reported dead in Lagos plane crash •Names of more victims emerge (168,888 views) THE FINAL DISGRACE: Igbo scholar unleashes more facts about Igbo/Yoruba history, finishes off Femi Fani-Kayode with second article (156,523 views) My wasted years in Olumba Olumba Obu’s Evil Brotherhood (153,185 views) Lagos plane crash: Journalist releases victims’ names (147,962 views) Gunmen kill ASP, 2 other police officers in vain bid to kidnap Rivers PDP chieftain (139,124 views)

 

Categories Advertorials (3) African Press Organisation (81) Art & Literature (52) Business & Economy (3,363) Business Verdict (46) Columnists (889) Complaints & Requests (94) Enterprise & Opportunities (207) Entertainment (516) Features (616) Global Business Monitor (286) International (2,148) Interview (157) Live Commentary (28) Love Matters (127) News (37,318) Opinion (1,024) Pidgin (10) Politics (5,626) Religion (787) Sports (1,612) Stock Watch (33) AMA & Al Jazeera Global Update

 

CBN banner

Firstmobile banner

 

 

NEWS EXPRESS TV

Nigerian detainees send SOS from Osama prison

 

APO Group Partner

 

 

CLASSIFIED ADS

GOCOP Accredited Member

GOCOP Accredited member

 

 

Africa Media Agency and Al Jazeera

Advertisement