Death handed down in blasphemy case

Published March 28, 2014

LAHORE: A court sentenced a Christian man to death for blasphemy on Thursday, his lawyer said, over an incident that triggered a riot here.

Sawan Masih was convicted of committing blasphemy during the course of a conversation with a Muslim friend in the Joseph Colony neighbourhood in March last year.

More than 3,000 people rampaged through Joseph Colony, torching some 100 Christian homes, after the allegations against Masih emerged.

Naeem Shakir, one of Masih’s lawyers, said: “The judge has announced the death sentence for Sawan Masih. We will appeal the sentence in the Lahore High Court.”

Verdict and sentence were announced inside the jail where Masih was held, Shakir said.

The country has had a de facto moratorium on civilian hangings since 2008. Only one person has been executed since then, a soldier convicted by court martial.

Masih has maintained his innocence and argued the real reason for the blasphemy allegation was a property dispute between him and his friend.

No one was killed in the rampage through Joseph Colony last year but the incident highlighted the sensitivity of blasphemy in Pakistan. —AFP

Opinion

Editorial

20 May, 2022

TTP peace talks

ANOTHER attempt to sue for peace with the outlawed TTP is being made, again facilitated by the Afghan Taliban that...
20 May, 2022

Beyond the law

THE senior judiciary should take care not to overreach in its zeal to ‘fix’ issues it ideally need not worry...
20 May, 2022

Political musical chairs

YET another political crisis is brewing in Balochistan, where old rivals Jam Kamal Khan Alyani and Sardar Yar...
Updated 19 May, 2022

To be or not to be

The same decision taken weeks or months from now will have far more devastating consequences.
19 May, 2022

Impact on Punjab

THE Supreme Court judgement interpreting the issue of disqualification of parliamentarians under Article 63A of the...
19 May, 2022

Forest fires

THOUGH spot and forest fires have become a perennial phenomenon especially in peak summer, the recent blazes —...