Article written by Advocate Mustaq Gill representing Lead. BPCA added quote form Wilson Chowdhry:
Today 27 March,2014 during a blasphemy trial at Lahore court Mr.Choudhary Ghulam Murtaza the additional and session Judge, announced a judgement in the case of Sawan Masih who was accused of blasphemy - case FIR No.112/2013 under section 295 C of PPC. Read full story of the blasphemy victim Sawan Masih here:
Judge Murtaza spoke in court:
"The accused Sawan Masih is hereby convicted under section 295-C PPC and sentenced to death. He shall be hanged by the neck till he is dead. Sawan Masih is also liable for a fine of Rs.200,000 if in default of this payment he will be liable to 6 months imprisonment."
Senior Investigator Mr. Gill explained to us that the FIR under section 295C (Blasphemy laws) is fictitious and has no substantial proof. He described how the FIR was registered after after the submission of a second written application to Senior Police Investigation, City Division by the complainant Shahid Imran. In the written complaint Mr Imran stated that Sawan said “Our Jesus will come back again and must come back and He is the Son of God” and wrote about some alleged derogatory words spoken about the Islamic prophet Muahammed.
Mustaq Gill believes these words and the submission are an thought after consultation with extremists, which undermining the veracity and authenticity of the case brought before the prosecution, making it highly doubtful.
Mushtaq Gill said;
"We condemn this death sentence which has created great fear and insecurity amongst Christians in Pakistan."
His group "LEAD filed a bail petition on behalf of Sawan Masih in the same Court, during April 2013. Unfortunately the bail petition was withdrawn by Sawan Masih's trial defence counsel.
Mr Gill spoke of the failed bail
"Bail is legal remedy for those accused. It must be availed in two ways, either before arrest or after arrest,so we submitted the application on behalf of Sawan Masih. The case was tried by LEAD's lawyers but this was deliberately ignored by his trial defence counsels"
"In June,2013, we petitioned the Lahore High Court to cancel the bail of Extremists who were allegedly involved in anti-Christian violence in Joseph Colony, Bedami Bagh, Lahore which is still pending a decision."
Wilson Chowdhry Chairman of the BPCA said;
"Pakistani Christian's have become easy targets for extremists. Every day a new travesty reminds us how their quality of life is being eroded and their concerns about safety has reached its lowest ebb. They are anathema to Pakistani civil society, simply due to the scriptural text they choose to believe and the God they choose to worship. Their status in the country they belong to and still adore has reached a Nadir, their only hope is an insouciant Government and uncaring world. We will continue to pray for them and support them as best we can."
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