ASIA/PAKISTAN - A case of alleged blasphemy solved thanks to political and religious leaders

Thursday, 27 October 2016 blasphemy   islam   religious minorities   violence  


Quetta (Agenzia Fides) - Christian and Islamic religious leaders who intervened to resolve a case of alleged blasphemy in Quetta, the Pakistani province of Baluchistan played a decisive role regarding two Christians. As Fr. Renald Remindran, missionary of the Oblates of Mary Immaculate in Quetta reports to Fides, a nine-year-old Christian boy named Izhan and his mother Shakeela Kauser, a nurse at the Civil Hospital in Quetta and mother of three children, were stopped and questioned on charges of blasphemy: they were accused of having burned pages of the Koran on 20 October.
After the complaint, the police stopped them. In this instance some local Christian leaders got the leaders of the Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam (Jui) organization involved, who played a key role to exonerate the two of all charges. The matter was resolved on October 21, and accusations of blasphemy were declared void,
"We are delighted with this outcome. It is significant. In the province of Baluchistan no one so far has been charged and convicted for blasphemy", refers Fr. Remindran to Fides. In a note sent to Fides, Anjum James Paul, President of the Pakistan Minorities Teachers' Association, appreciated the role of political and religious leaders, Muslims and Christians, to ascertain the truth and prevent any conflict between the two communities. (PA) (Agenzia Fides 27/10/2016)