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‘More sinned against than sinning’

11 2 7

As I write these words, news is pouring in about Aasia Bibi’s flight from Pakistan to a foreign country. While her acquittal may prove to be a precedent in blasphemy cases, particularly for the minorities in Pakistan, it is also a poignant reminder of the sad situation of rising intolerance and extremism in the country, desperately awaiting a correction.

When the controversial verdict of her death sentence being overturned was announced last week, sentiments were fiery. In my previous column, I refrained from commenting on the status of Aasia and her verdict, though could not help discussing the plight of our country, as for nearly four days it burned. Vehicles were smashed, roads were blocked, life was brought to a standstill.

Today, while hoping that Aasia, her family and her advocate remain safe, I cannot hold back any more. The worthlessness of a living soul, increasing practice of incitations, strengthening of false beliefs, alarming rise in violent and angry expressions, apathy towards Islamic practice of humility, compassion and tolerance and growing fear against speaking truth, cannot be dismissed. The height of ignorance and exploitation can no longer be allowed to foster.

When havoc was being played in the country, the perpetrators were those who were being told that Aasia uttered blasphemous words nearly a decade ago. Carrying sticks and even swords, they were made to believe that Aasia, mother of two, does not deserve to live. They were convinced that her acquittal was anti-Islam, anti-Pakistan. What they didn’t know or rather didn’t want to learn, was that the blasphemy probably did not even occur.........

© Pakistan Today