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starlight

Pakistani shia youth gets death sentence

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MULTAN, Pakistan (AP) — A minority Shiite Muslim was sentenced to death in Pakistan for sharing blasphemous content about Islam on social media, a government prosecutor said.

Judge Shabbir Ahmed announced the sentence for 30-year-old Taimoor Raza on Saturday in Bahawalpur in eastern Punjab province, according to Shafiq Qureshi. Raza was arrested last year for allegedly posting derogatory content about Sunni Muslim religious leaders and the wives of the Prophet Mohammed on Facebook.

Qureshi said Bahawalpur's counter-terrorism force arrested Raza in April last year following a complaint that he was showing onlookers objectionable material on his cell phone at a bus terminal. He added that Raza had previously posted other blasphemous material on Facebook.

Pakistan is a predominantly Sunni Muslim country and the rivalry between Shiite and Sunni Muslims dates back to the seventh century when they had a disagreement who should be the heir to Islam's Prophet Mohammed.

Under Pakistan's harsh blasphemy laws, anyone accused of insulting God, Islam or other religious personalities can be sentenced to death.

Pakistan last year arrested 15 people, 10 Muslims and five non-Muslims, on blasphemy charges, according to a report issued by the independent rights group Human Rights Commission of Pakistan.

Raza’s defence attorney said his client had been charged with two unrelated sections of the law to ensure the maximum penalty. “Initially, it was a case of insulting remarks on sectarian grounds and the offence was 298A, which punishes for derogatory remarks about other religious personalities for up to two years,” said Fida Hussain Rana, the defence counsel. Raza was later charged unde section 295C of the penal code, related to “derogatory acts against prophet Muhammad”, Rana said.

Social media represents a new battleground for the Pakistani fight against blasphemy. Authorities have asked Twitter and Facebook to help identify users sharing blasphemous material, and have distributed text messages encouraging Pakistanis to report fellow citizens.

Human rights defenders have expressed concern that the country’s blasphemy laws, and the authorities’ zealous application of them, provide a tool for people to carry out personal vendettas, particularly because nobody is ever punished for making false accusations.

Interesting fact :Raza was arrested last year after a debate about Islam on Facebook with a man who turned out to be a counter-terrorism agent. He was one among 15 people arrested by the counter-terrorism department last year, accused of blasphemy, according to the HRC, Pakistan. 

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2017/jun/11/pakistan-man-sentenced-to-death-for-blasphemy-on-facebook

How easy it is for anyone to frame people by doing this. Start a facebook discussion and shias will say what they say about the three caliphs and Ayesha and you can sentence them to death for blasphemy. 

 

Edited by starlight
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24 minutes ago, starlight said:

A minority Shiite Muslim was sentenced to death in Pakistan for sharing blasphemous content about Islam on social media, a government prosecutor said.

That is a concern. People need to realize that something written on a social media account can be used against you. The only similar incident here in the US, is Harvard University has refused to admit some students who were already accepted to study, following their immoral statements on Facebook.

Harvard Rescinds Admission Of 10 Students Over Obscene Facebook Messages

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The reports in Pak media say that he also made blasphemous statements about the person of the Prophet himself, which is the only offence punishable by death. Other offences carry prison term or fine or both but not death sentence. The judge was obviously convinced that he committed blasphemy against the Prophet.

But reports never quote the exact nature of the so-called blasphemous content, so we will never know what was actually said that got him into hot waters. 

Tons of Shias say whatever they like against Sunni caliphs and umhaat online or in real life. Offenders might be booked but it happens rarely. 

The fact that he is a Shia is causing a lot of consternation in Shia circles. If this is only about Sunni religious figures then it sets a dangerous precedent. 

The govt has stepped up monitoring of online content. Dozens of websites that hosted anti-Islamic/blasphemous content have been blocked along with anti-military and anti-Pakistan webpages. The case of the four missing bloggers attracted a great deal of attention, but despite allegations of hardcore blasphemy (I've seen that awful stuff, it was the worst I'd ever seen), they were freed and allowed to leave the country. No charges, nothing.

There's a lot of politics and double standards in how these cases are dealt with. In any case, we need to be extra careful. It's been a long time I stopped taking part in religious discussions on open forums and social media.

 

Edited by Marbles

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@Hameedeh  I read the Harvard news a few days back, thanks for sharing. 

You are right about social media, right now I am very curious to know what exactly he wrote about the wives or companions that earned him a death sentence. Pakistan blasphemy laws are archaic and often abused. In 2010 a doctor was arrested for tossing out the business card of a man who had the name Muhammad. Another woman, a christian village girl was sentenced to death over a squabble with another woman in which she apparently committed blasphemy. 

What's concerning for me here is that death sentences have never been issued before over insulting the wives or caliphs. Is it another plan by the saudi petro dollars fed government to aid shia killings? 

Edited by starlight
typo

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49 minutes ago, starlight said:

Note to all pakistanis : Be careful on social media 

Thanks for information Sister.

I will try to get more information about this story. It is indeed a shame for the Government of Pakistan. As long as the "taklu" brothers are incharge of this country, one can expect more such things to happen.

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Yes, this is the first time death penalty has been given to an accused, but it is highly unlikely that the sentence would be carried out. There would be an appeal and even if the primary judgment is upheld, he wouldn't be hanged for years, maybe never. 

 

Edited by Marbles

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19 minutes ago, Marbles said:

Yes, this is the first time death penalty has been given to an accused, but it is highly unlikely that the sentence will be carried out. There will be an appeal and even if the primary judgment is upheld, he won't be hanged for years, maybe never. 

He will rot in prison. A worse outcome imho.

Anyway, this is exactly why the late Salman Taseer called the blasphemy law a "kala qanoon" or a law meant to be abused, in other words. The problem with our judicial, lawl and injustice system of Pakistan is that its a completely corrupt cesspool with no enlightenment whatsoever to be observed in it. Its a form of capitalist market where lawyers their peons, judges and their peons all make a lot of money each day by robbing blind anyone unfortunate enough to ask for justice or brought to justice. Its a mockery of justice in essence. The police, equally if not more corrupt, will always think of and throw in a lot of extra charges, hoping to deny bail to the defendant and/or get him maximum penalty. The illiterate puppet politicians who all used to be petty crooks and gangsters, try to devise laws that appease the illiterate savage masses and their benefactors like Saudi Arabia. A literate and civilized Paki Sunni knows as much about Islam as his local mosque mullah tells him when queried and his word is gospel because that's the extent of how much they care about religious obligation.

I don't even want to discuss if death or even a two year penalty for any blasphemy is islamic or not. No use. Pakistan is a hopeless cesspool. All but rotten dry irreversibly with only the choking ammonia left all over from the process of its rotting. I hope it gets nuked by India. Seriously hate this place now.

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18 minutes ago, Darth Vader said:

I hope it gets nuked by India. Seriously hate this place now.

:D hey brother! Don't say that, do you want us and our generations to face the effects of nuclear radiations?

You can curse the system, but not the land. This land will produce couple of true soldiers of Imam Mehdi (ajjal Allaho Ta'ala farajahum), In-Sha Allah.

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8 minutes ago, Salsabeel said:

Don't say that, do you want us and our generations to face the effects of nuclear radiations?

Its a good trade in fact. I don't want to feed another dime to this little Dajjal as tax. Tax which is siphoned off to swiss banks and never used here. Noon league has a death grip over the country and brainless masses of maggots will let them rule and even support them. Foreign powers will help them, them and Zardari's PPP. Same thing. I'm sorry but plutonium based nukes are the only solution to Pakistan's problems. We have waited decades and it has only become an abomination. And why shouldn't it. Its the fate of all falsehood and hope can not help it.

Edited by Darth Vader

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3 minutes ago, Darth Vader said:

'm sorry but plutonium based nukes are the only solution to Pakistan's problems

Is it worse than the Saudi Arabia? Pakistan will nuke India in return, Pakistani nukes are more powerful & sophisticated than the Indians. So your idea is "third class" indeed.

I am not hopeless. Even I have lost many close relatives here but I am still hopeful.

We need to put some extra efforts, it will take time, but with the help of Allah, things will get better In-Sha Allah.

 

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1 minute ago, Salsabeel said:

We need to put some extra efforts, it will take time, but with the help of Allah, things will get better In-Sha Allah.

 

No they won't. You can say inshallah a billion times daily, give all your best efforts, and Pakistan will only get worse. Its like saying hell can turn into paradise. Pakistanis deserve Pakistan in this life. So if it gets nuked and cauterized it would actually be a good and wholesome thing for everyone!

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5 hours ago, starlight said:

Interesting fact :Raza was arrested last year after a debate about Islam on Facebook with a man who turned out to be a counter-terrorism agent. 

Did the counter-terrorism agent post on Facebook first, to bait somebody to say something? Then the man was arrested by replying to the bait? 

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5 hours ago, Hameedeh said:

Did the counter-terrorism agent post on Facebook first, to bait somebody to say something? Then the man was arrested by replying to the bait? 

We will never know. But it's rather worrying that this is a 'anti terrorism' initiative taken by the government under the directive of Saudi loving PM Nawaz Shareef.

@wolverine nothing from the Pakistan media. Infact this didn't even make to the news.

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Surprised?

The way things are here now anyone can be kidnapped by the authorities and killed off secretly. No media will ever report it. No open trials either, if a trial does happen. MQM members in Karachi, criminals with no political support all get shot and thrown into the Indus river. I have friends in the rangers. And now the 'counter-terrorism' operation has started in Lahore area. Knowing how they forgive the actual terrorists, for instance, they pardoned Ihsan ullah Ihsan the main man of TTP.

And knowing so many examples of pardoned suicide bombers caught before detonation and their supporting actors. Even murderers with insane counts of murder, like the let go Malik Ishaq who killed 83 Shia (though yes later he had to put down because no matter how loyal, a mad dog who threatens the masters has to be put down). I hope the examples I cited were reported enough even if without the full context. Also, blaspheming against political figures in power is also punishable and they have arrested many people for that since last year.

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8 hours ago, starlight said:

nothing from the Pakistan media. Infact this didn't even make to the news.

:shock: This is shocking. I wondered why one of the guardian reporters is from Kabul. Brave enough to write something about Pakistan but not even living there. 

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I saw this in the news over the weekend and not really surprised. Let's be real here - the Blasphemy Law was enacted not to defend Allah, the Quran and the Prophet (saw) but to defend the Caliphs and the Wives of the Prophet.

All this is showing is that we've gone from mob justice to state-sanctioned 'justice'.

As bad as things are, we (the shia) are still better off today than during the times of the Abbasids so I encourage my brothers and sisters in Pakistan to not lose hope...(easy to say from my ivory tower in the US). I have a lot of family in Pakistan so I know the trials and tribulations you go through.

Injustice never lasts and neither will this Saudi regime last. On a lighter note, any bets on when saying bad about Al-Saud will be rolled under the blasphemy law?

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12 minutes ago, salman1 said:

Have the Shia ulema of Pakistan said anything on this matter? Any aalim or representative?

Nothing. I don't think anyone is going to speak up. Blasphemy is a sensitive issue in Pakistan.  

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