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Notices issued on MQM’s blasphemy plea against PPP leader

Updated October 24, 2014
Leader of the Opposition in National Assembly Syed Khursheed Ahmed. – File Photo
Leader of the Opposition in National Assembly Syed Khursheed Ahmed. – File Photo

KARACHI: A sessions court on Thursday issued notices to the police on an application seeking the registration of a case under the blasphemy law against Leader of the Opposition in the National Assembly Syed Khursheed Shah till Oct 28.

Dr Laila Parveen of the Muttahida Qaumi Movement along with eight other applicants through their counsel moved the application under Section 22-A of the criminal procedure code and contended that on Oct 17 during his visit to Bagh-i-Jinnah, near the mausoleum of the Quaid-i-Azam, Mr Shah stated that the word ‘Muhajir’ was an expletive.

They argued that the Holy Prophet (peace be upon him), most prophets, Khulfa-i-Rashideen and Sahaba-i-Karam had migrated from one city to another while the word ‘Muhajir’ was cited with great respect in the Quran.

Therefore, the applicants contended, the senior leader of the Pakistan People Party had committed an offence of blasphemy punishable under Sections 295-A (deliberate and malicious acts intended to outrage religious feelings of any class by insulting its religion or religious beliefs), 295-B (defiling, etc, of the Holy Quran) and 295-C (use of derogatory remarks, etc, in respect of the Holy Prophet) of the Pakistan Penal Code.

Impleading the station house officer of the Brigade police station, provincial police officer and Mr Shah as respondents, the applicants maintained that they approached the police station concerned on Oct 21 and also sent an application to the IG of Sindh police for the registration of a case against the proposed accused.

However, they argued that the police turned down their pleas since the proposed accused was a senior leader of the PPP, in power in Sindh.

They asked the court to direct the police to register a case against the opposition leader.

After a preliminary hearing, additional district and sessions judge (east) Chaudhry Waseem Iqbal issued notices to the respondents for Oct 28.

Published in Dawn, October 24th, 2014