MULTAN, Feb 25: Bhakkar police have booked a man under the blasphemy law for instigating a blasphemy case against his estranged friend. However, police have taken no action against the man who is complainant in this sensitive case.

The police found baseless the allegations against a man, who was primarily booked for blasphemy, after an investigation spanning more than one month.

As the story goes, Shahnawaz, a resident of Jhamat Shomali near Dullewala in Darya Khan tehsil of Bhakkar district, lodged an FIR (No. 4/11) against Muhammad Javed of Dullewala on January 17, stating that he received some text messages from an unknown cell number on January 10 that contained blasphemous remarks.

During the investigation, Dullewala police seized Javed’s cell phone on January 17 and found blasphemous messages in its sent items box. Javed moved a local court for interim bail that he was granted on January 20.

However, he courted arrest and told the police that he did not send these messages. He told the police the cell number that received the messages was owned by his estranged friend Farooq Azam, a resident of Jhamat Shomali, and it never remained in the use of Shahnawaz.

Javed said his two-year long friendship with Azam went sour because of petty differences. He said on the day of the incident Azam called him by his cell phone and requested a meeting at a teashop.

During the meeting, Azam sought his cell phone to make a call, saying that his phone’s battery was not charged.

He said Azam went away from him “to make a call”, returned his phone to him minutes later and left the place in a hurry.

Police found during the investigation that Azam and his friend Abdul Basit handed over the SIM of Azam’s phone to Shahnawaz and instigated him to lodge an FIR against Javed.

During the first phase of the investigation, Azam told police that he owned the phone number, which received the blasphemous messages, but he did not make any call to Javed for a meeting at the teashop. However, he accused Javed of sending him blasphemous messages.

When police verified data of Azam and Javed’s cell phones, the investigators found that calls were made from Azam’s phone to Javed’s phone. Other evidence collected by the police also showed that Javed’s statements were true and Azam’s untrue.

Police released Javed after two weeks of custody on February 22 and booked Azam under the allegations he levelled against Javed.

Azam moved the court for his interim bail, which he was granted and February 24 was fixed for the hearing of the case. Later, the hearing was adjourned till February 28 because the judge was on leave.

Complainant Shahnawaz said he had no enmity with Javed or Azam. He said he was satisfied with the police investigations wherein Javed had been declared innocent.

Police have cleared Shahnawaz from this bogus case of blasphemy. DSP Circle Sher Bahadur Niazi says the only thing Javed could do against Shahnawaz is he can move a court against him. Niazi’s statement implies that police cannot take any action against Shahnawaz.

Behind the entire story is another story and the story is that Shahnawaz is activist of a banned outfit and police cannot afford to annoy his patron organisation.

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