In Historic Move, Blasphemy Case against Pakistani Girl to Be Dropped

By Siddiqui, Taha | The Christian Science Monitor, November 2, 2012 | Go to article overview
Save to active project

In Historic Move, Blasphemy Case against Pakistani Girl to Be Dropped


Siddiqui, Taha, The Christian Science Monitor


In what is being termed a historic verdict by the higher courts in Pakistan, charges against a Christian girl accused of blasphemy were dropped on Tuesday, in response to an appeal filed by her council of lawyers.

The police have withdrawn the charges and quashed the case against her confirmed Tahir Naveed Chaudhry, one of her lawyers, saying that the 14-year-old Rimsha Masih was quite relieved and happy about the courts decision.

Human rights activists in Pakistan say this is a positive development and will set a precedent in the future for the judiciary and law enforcement agencies to act responsibly in cases of blasphemy.

Since the high court decided to throw out the charges against her, it [will] now become a case to refer to and will have long- term positive implications. It will also serve as a lesson for the police to thoroughly investigate cases before charging anyone of blasphemy, says Nadeem Anthony, a Christian activist and member of the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan.

Mr. Anthony stressed that in past whenever the police have probed cases of blasphemy, accusations have mostly turned out to be false. The Pakistani daily newspaper Dawn reported that some 5,000 cases were registered between 1984 to 2004, and only 964 people were charged with blasphemy.

Rimsha, who was arrested in August and faced life in prison after being accused of burning pages of the Quran by her neighbor, was kept in a high security prison in Rawalpindi, the military city outside Islamabad, for more than two weeks. She was granted bail in September when it emerged that a local cleric had planted false evidence against her.

It appears the cleric wanted to force out the minority Christian families in the area, saying that they were disturbing his call of prayers by holding mass at the local church.

However, despite the fact that the case was dropped, she had to be flown out of the prison to an unknown location to ensure her safety and has been in hiding since.

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
Loading One moment ...
Project items
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited article

In Historic Move, Blasphemy Case against Pakistani Girl to Be Dropped
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

While we understand printed pages are helpful to our users, this limitation is necessary to help protect our publishers' copyrighted material and prevent its unlawful distribution. We are sorry for any inconvenience.
Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.

Are you sure you want to delete this highlight?