Pakistani Court Acquits Christian Woman of 'Blasphemy'

Monday, August 16, 2010

by Joseph DeCaro, Worthy News International Correspondent

GUJRANWALA, Pakistan (Worthy News) -- A local court exonerated a Christian woman of blasphemy charges after authorities previously pressured her into making a false confession.

Rubina Bibi was set free after residents in Punjab Province accused her of blaspheming Muhammad; she was arrested under Section 295-C of Pakistan’s blasphemy laws for having spoken ill of Muhammad during a quarrel with a local resident. Both Bibi and her young son were then sent to Gujranwala district jail.

Blasphemy laws in Pakistan have become infamous for their misuse by Muslims to settle personal scores against non-Muslims.

Bibi's case comes closely on the heels of the sentencing of a Christian couple to 25 years under Section 295-B of the blasphemy laws: defiling the Qu'ran by touching its sacred scripture without first ritually washing.

In Karachi, a court sentenced another Christian, Qamar David, to 25 years and fined 100,000 rupees ($1,170 US) after he was convicted for sending blasphemous text messages under Section 295-A of the blasphemy statues: “injuring religious feelings of any community” and under Section 295-C for derogatory remarks against Muhammad.

His lawyer, Pervaiz Aslam Chaudhry, told Compass Direct that although the conviction was baseless, David still received 25 years in prison.