Tag Archives: Rimsha

100 Onion strategy bears fruit, and the News does Khatmenaboowat

It is being reported that the US has declared the Haqqani network as a terrorist group.

The Jihadi-Paknationalist faction of the Pakistani state has put out that it is unhappy with this development http://tribune.com.pk/story/433029/blacklisting-haqqanis-not-good-pakistani-official/

The pragmatic faction has indicated its OK.

The One Hundred Onions, One Hundred Slaps strategy continues to operate. No end in sight. http://www.3quarksdaily.com/3quarksdaily/2011/06/pakistan-end-of-the-affair-by-omar-ali.html

Meanwhile, today is the anniversary of Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto’s shameful orchestration of a National Assembly resolution that declared Qadiyanis as non-Muslims. To celebrate this occasion, the newspaper “The News” (part of the Jang group, Pakistan’s largest media group) has published a piece of anti-Qadiyani propaganda. 

Excerpt: “September 7, 1974, is a memorable and historic day for the Islamic Republic of Pakistan as, on this day, the National Assembly, through a constitutional amendment, unanimously declared all the followers of Mirza Ghulam Ahmad Qadiani as non-Muslim minority. Later in 1984, through an ordinance Qadianis were prohibited from using Islamic terms, and a ban was imposed on all their un-Islamic activities…”

Continue reading 100 Onion strategy bears fruit, and the News does Khatmenaboowat

PAKISTAN PERISCOPE – Curse of Blasphemy Law

The likelyhood of death sentence being awarded to an 11 year old for alleged blasphemy is symptomatic of the naked abuse of power exercised by religious zealots

By Ayesha Siddiqa, Independent Social Scientist

Let us roll a dice and guess who is more lucky: Abbas, tortured and burnt to death for allegedly blasphemy, or Rimsha who may survive death but will forever be scarred for being nearly sentenced to death on similar charges? Some will probably consider the young Christian girl lucky, compared to Abbas and scores of others who suffered under the archaic blasphemy law.

Continue reading PAKISTAN PERISCOPE – Curse of Blasphemy Law

Pakistan’s blasphemy law: how can we end this colossal absurdity?

The country’s blasphemy law is overwhelmingly being used to persecute religious minorities and settle personal vendettas. As the case of 14-year-old Christian Rimsha Masih gains global attention, why have politicians failed to act?

By: Mohammed Hanif

Fourteen years ago, around the time young Rimsha Masih, now in jail under Pakistan’s blasphemy law, was born, a Roman Catholic bishop walked into a courthouse in Sahiwal, quite close to my hometown in Central Punjab. The Right Rev John Joseph was no ordinary clergyman; he was the first native bishop in Pakistan and the first ever Punjabi bishop anywhere in the world. He was also a brilliant and celebrated community organiser, the kind of man oppressed communities look up to as a role model. Joseph walked in alone, asking a junior priest to wait outside the courthouse. Inside the court, he took out a handgun and shot himself in the head. The bullet in his head was his protest against the court’s decision to sentence a fellow Christian, Ayub Masih, to death for committing blasphemy. Masih had been charged with arguing with a Muslim co-worker over religious matters. The exact content of the conversation cannot be repeated here because that would be blasphemous. The bishop had campaigned long and hard to get the blasphemy law repealed without any luck. He wrote prior to his death: “I shall count myself extremely fortunate if in this mission of breaking the barriers, our Lord accepts the sacrifice of my blood for the benefit of his people.”

Joseph had been pursuing another case, in which an 11-year-old, Salamat Masih, along with his father and uncle, was accused of scribbling something blasphemous on the wall of the mosque. We don’t really know what he wrote, because reproducing it, here or in court, would constitute blasphemy.

The boy’s uncle, Manzoor Masih, was shot dead during the trial. The Masih case went to the high court, where a judge, Arif Bhatti, applied common sense and released him. A year later the judge was murdered in his own chambers, and his killers claimed that the judge had committed blasphemy by freeing those accused in the blasphemy case.

Frustrated and in a fit of rage, the bishop meditated and reached the conclusion that he should kill himself publicly to make his point.

You could argue that Joseph should have organised candlelight vigils, gone on a hunger strike, hired better lawyers. But he had tried everything and realised that a bullet in the head in the middle of a court was his only way to draw attention to this colossal absurdity called blasphemy law.

He was wrong. The law stayed. Many more Christians were killed.

There are situations though, where confronted with the prospect of a 14-year-old being sentenced to death, as a celebrated community leader you can’t do anything but take a gun to your head.

And hope for the best.

Continue reading Pakistan’s blasphemy law: how can we end this colossal absurdity?

When the pseudo-sentiments of the pseudo-religious are pseudo-hurt

By: Shivam Vij

In neighbouring Pakistan, an Islamic cleric recently accused a young Christian girl, Rimsha Masih, of blasphemy, a charge punishable by life imprisonment. He said she had burnt some pages that contained verses from the Quran. The 14 year old girl hails from a poor family and suffers from Down’s Syndrome. An eyewitness to the event showed courage and told a magistrate the truth: it was the Muslim cleric who had put those burnt pages in Rimsha’s bag. The cleric has been arrested and is set, in turn, to be charged with blasphemy.

I have been thinking about the incident. Insulting somebody’s religion is bad. It may cause offence. Often it is intended to cause offence. If somebody insults Islam, by doing things like burning pages containing verses from the Quran, it is bound to outrage a Muslim.But what happens when the Muslim has burnt those pages to implicate a Christian? Where does the outrage disappear? Why are the right-wingers and the mullahs in Pakistan suddenly silent? The cleric’s lawyer had threatened the judge that if the girl is let off she could be lynched – such was the outrage! Where has the outrage suddenly disappeared? Where are the calls for lynching the blasphemer to death?

And what does this hypocrisy tell us? It tells us that such outrage is, in the first place, fake.  That their religious sentiments weren’t really hurt when they said they were hurt. It was just that they wanted to persecute Christians and for doing so they were happy to commit blasphemy that they could then accuse Christians of doing!

What does that tell you of the claims of such people over how strong their religious, nationalist or whatever “sentiments” are?

I have noticed several such incidents in both Pakistan and India in the recent past. Let me give you a few examples.

Continue reading When the pseudo-sentiments of the pseudo-religious are pseudo-hurt

Why Pakistanis Won’t Speak Out Against Blasphemy Law

By: Tahir Gora

The arrest of 11-year-or-so-old Christian girl, Rimsha Masih, in Pakistan in connection with the blasphemy charges has shocked the world but not Pakistan and majority Pakistanis.

For instance, a Pakistani Canadian from Mississauga, Ontario Canada wrote on the Internet in the wake of this senseless arrest, “Lets fight against the terrorism of USA and support the cause of AAFIA SIDDIQUE (a Pakistani lady convicted and jailed in the USA for assault with intent to murder her U.S. interrogators in Afghanistan)”, he stated further, “I am 100% sure that nothing will happen to the girl (Rimsha) and she will be released, not to worry.”

While undermining the arrest of poor little Rimsha and provoking dispute in Aafia conviction case, that Pakistani-Canadian fellow completely forgot that a Pakistani Christian lady, Asia Bibi, a mother of five is still behind the bars. She received a sentence of death by a Pakistani court in connection of Blasphemy Law in November 2010.

Continue reading Why Pakistanis Won’t Speak Out Against Blasphemy Law

Pakistan ‘Koran plot’ imam remanded in blasphemy case

A Pakistani imam has been remanded in custody, accused of planting pages of the Koran among burnt pages in the bag of a Christian girl held for blasphemy.

The girl was detained two weeks ago near the capital Islamabad after an angry mob demanded she be punished.

Imam Khalid Chishti allegedly told a witness that this was a “way of getting rid of Christians”, a prosecutor said.

The girl, named as Rimsha, is said to be about 14 and to have learning difficulties.

The case has sparked international condemnation.

Earlier this week, a court extended Rimsha’s detention at a maximum-security prison by a further two weeks.

Her father has said he fears for his daughter’s life and for the safety of his family. He has called on Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari to pardon her.

Continue reading Pakistan ‘Koran plot’ imam remanded in blasphemy case

A sigh of relief: Maulvi who fabricated ‘burning of Quranic pages’ in order to frame charges against Rimsha in blasphemy, has been arrested

Prayer leader arrested for fabricating evidence in Rimsha Masih case

By Web Desk

RAWALPINDI: Police have arrested prayer leader Khalid Jadoon on charges of fabricating evidence, which he had used to accuse Rimsha Masih of committing blasphemy by allegedly burning Quranic pages, Express News reported early on Sunday.

Express News correspondent Qamarul Munawar said that Hafiz Muhammad Zubair, who witnessed Jadoon adding pages of the Quran, recorded a statement with the Rawalpindi magistrate on Saturday.

According to Zubair’s account, he was sitting in Iteqaaf in the mosque when some people handed burnt pages to the prayer leader. After a little while, Jadoon added additional pages of the Quran to the pile.

Zubair, in his statement added that three other people present with him in the mosque asked Jadoon why he was adding documents to the pile of burnt paper, to which prayer leader said that such an act was necessary to strengthen their case.

Munawar reported that Islamabad police has now arrested Jadoon who are now questioning him.

Rimsha has been in custody since she was arrested more than two weeks ago accused of burning Quranic papers, in breach of Pakistan’s blasphemy laws. According to medical reports Rimsha is 14 year old minor, and has a mental age below her real age.

Courtesy: The Express Tribune

http://tribune.com.pk/story/430049/prayer-leader-arrested-for-fabricating-evidence-in-rimsha-masih-case/

Imam manipulated evidences against Rimsha, says eyewitness

‘Imam changed evidences against Rimsha’

ISLAMABAD: The Imam of a Mosque, Khalid Jadoon, manipulated the evidence against Rimsha Maseeh, said an eyewitness in a statement before the magistrate on Saturday.

According to the eyewitness Hafiz Muhammad Zubair, he was observing Aitekaf in the mosque when he got to know about the incident of alleged burning of Quranic verses.

He said that Ammad, the complainant in the case, handed over the ashes of Quranic verses to the Imam of the mosque Khalid Jadoon, who also added more verses to it.

The eyewitness further said in his statement that he himself along with two more Motakif protested against the manipulation of the evidences. He said that he and other eyewitnesses had asked Khalid Jadoon to present the real evidences against Rimsha.

Meanwhile, the religious scholar Tahir Ashrafi has asked the Ulema as to what kind of punishment Imams like Khalid Jadoon deserved.

Courtesy: Geo Tv

http://www.geo.tv/GeoDetail.aspx?ID=65868

More details » The News

http://www.thenews.com.pk/article-65868-Imam-changed-evidences-against-Rimsha

Complainant against Rimsha mysteriously disappears

RAWALPINDI: Amad, the complainant and nephew of the landowner of Rimsha’s residence, mysteriously disappeared since the first information report (FIR) against the girl was lodged.

Khalid Chishti, the prayer leader at the Jamia Masjid Aminia, also accepted he had delivered a message from the mosque at Mera Jafar four months ago that Christians inhabiting the area should leave the place. …

Read more » The News

Why are we so intolerant? Emotional and heartfelt column on Rimsha. – By Mehr Tarar

VIEW : To do or not to — Mehr Tarar

How will we learn to differentiate between an outright insult to our religion and an inadvertent slip where the doer does not even know what the action implies?

I write because I feel. This is the only medium through which I can express with some coherence what I want to say. Words have a tremendous power, bigger than many of us realise, but words only affect when they carry an expression of what you truly believe, what you feel a level deeper than the superfluous, and when your belief and feeling strengthen into the knowledge that it all must be conveyed; if not to all, to some. If not to some, maybe to even one person, whom you may touch, one way or the other, subliminally, or if you are lucky, startle like an alarm going off at 4:00 am when you are finally asleep, after hours of insomnia. Words, for me, would never be a mere structuring of alphabets, painstakingly coerced together, to compile an essay that you force yourself to write, to meet a deadline, to score an A, to fill your weekly slot in a newspaper. I write because I love to write. I write because I am a firm believer of the potency of the right text hitting the right chord at the right time. I write because when there is too much chaos around me, the orderliness of keys placed side by side on my keyboard allows me the calm to figure out how I can give voice to my outrage. I write when there are moments to celebrate, goodness to value, and achievements to celebrate. As I write today, I wish there were noble things to write about instead of the stark randomness of madness that seems to permeate our collective consciousness as a nation. I wish.

Continue reading Why are we so intolerant? Emotional and heartfelt column on Rimsha. – By Mehr Tarar

Free Rimsha Masih

The latest victim of Pakistan’s blasphemy laws, is an 11 year old girl suffering from Downs Syndrome. Rimshah Masih screamed pitifully as she was brutally snatched from her mother by an angry mob intent on killing her. Burnt religious texts had been mischievously planted in a bag she was carrying. We call on the Pakistani Government to take action to stop the ongoing discrimination, persecution and hatred towards minorities living there. We call on the Britisha Government the EU and the Un to intervene on behalf of this poor child and to bring about her freedom.

To bring an end to hatred towards minority faiths in conservative Pakistan and to defend otherwise helpless victims like Rimsha please sign the petition below:

This petition will be sent to the Pakistan High Commission and 10 Downing Street.

Here our song for Rimsha here:

Read more » Petition Buzz

» To Sign a Petition to Free Rimsha Masih

Brutal murder of 12 years old orphan Christian boy Samuel Yaqoob by cutting his neck and burning him in Faisalabad

As the furore over the arrest of a minor Christian girl over blasphemy charge is yet to die down, the body of an 11-year-old boy from the minority community, bearing torture marks, was found in Faisalabad city of Pakistan’s Punjab province Wednesday, police said.

Samuel Yaqoob, a resident of the Christian Colony of Faisalabad, 100 km from Lahore, was brutally tortured before being killed. He had been missing since the evening of August 20, when he had stepped out of his home to go to the market. Yaqoob’s burnt body was found near a drain of the Christian Colony Wednesday. His lips, nose and belly were cut off and he could hardly be recognised as his body was badly burnt, relatives said.

Continue reading Brutal murder of 12 years old orphan Christian boy Samuel Yaqoob by cutting his neck and burning him in Faisalabad