Law in Pakistan and the agenda of Islamist terrorists appear on the same dark page when it comes to religious persecution. This has been shown recently in yet another instance of the victimization of a Christian who has been sentenced to death by a court in Lahore, Punjab province, over blasphemy charges.
The Independent published the story about Sawan Masih who got accused of blasphemy by a Muslim friend who had an argument with him while they both drank liquor (which of course is considered prohibited for Muslims) a year earlier. Following the accusation, police arrested the accused, apparently without any evidence supporting the accuser’s claim, and things went on to become a terror for the entire neighborhood when a mob attacked the Christian houses and a church. Now, Sawan Masih has been sentenced to death and he has appealed the sentence to fight his case in a higher court.
As is common in such cases, Christians commonly, but Muslims too, are accused of blasphemy by relatives, neighbors, and other people who have some score to settle with the accused. Property disputes, relationship rivalry, and business interest are some of the common motives for targeting a “thorn of the eye”.
But the real culprit that makes such victimization possible is Pakistan’s barbaric blasphemy law which bans any criticism of Islam’s prophet or any of its sacred cows. Worse, minimal evidence is required to prove charges of blasphemy against the defendant. A handful of Muslim witnesses testifying under oath are considered enough evidence to send someone to the gallows. And all this is happening in the 21st Century!
While human rights organizations, such as the Amnesty International, continue to condemn such cruelty in name of Islamic law, call for reforms have fallen dead under the powerful Islamist mafia operating countrywide and nurtured from abroad. In 2011, Punjab’s outspoken Governor Salman Taseer was assassinated by his own security guard when he criticized the blasphemy law and called it a “dark law”. Pakistan’s poor judicial system failed to serve justice despite open confession of his killer that he killed the Governor out of his fanaticism.