GUJRANWALA: A strife apparently caused by Social Media has claimed three precious lives.
According to reports 27th of July Sunday evening, a grandmother Bushra Bibi and her two young granddaughters were burned alive in their homes when an angry mob attacked their village over alleged blasphemy charges on another boy. This attack was caused by a picture posted on Facebook. The two young girls who were burnt alive were seven-years-old and eight-months old. These innocent burnt alive belonged to the Ahmadi community.
Pakistani Social Media has been for the most part been used more and more to discuss and protest against religious beliefs. All the while major issue of the blasphemy law has also been in discussion on the social media. A Pakistani lawyer Yassir Latif Hamdani suggested that,” anything that goes online could draw the unwanted attention of extremists.” “The immediate aftermath has been shock and expressions of outrage but soon it will die down and be forgotten as inevitably any tragedy in recent years has in this country. For the Ahmadi Muslim community it has been another incident in a long list of violent outrages against them in the last four years,” he said.
The Pakistani government has also put close monitoring observation on the spread of blasphemy online, initiating monitoring services for sites like Google and Yahoo in 2010.
The trouble started for Bushra Bibi when an 18-year-old Ahmadi man named Aqib Saleem uploaded a picture of a shrine in Mecca with a partially naked woman on top. Soon after his friend alerted the authorities in the neighborhood, subsequent to which an angry mob of nearly 1,000 people set the properties of Ahmadis on fire. And according to an international Human Rights organization, “There are credible reports in the media that Pakistani police stood by and did not intervene to protect those Ahmadiyya who were being targeted by this mob violence.
What is noteworthy that Gujranwala is chiefly populated by the Ahmadis, a minority religion. According to the Pakistani law, Ahmadis are not permitted to identify themselves as Muslim while they have been subjected to violent persecution for blasphemy in the past.
A spokesman of the Ahmadi community condemned the recent violence, claiming that,” the accused individual in question had his Facebook password stolen, which resulted in the image being posted.