Asia Bibi’s extreme penalty: President of Pakistan invoked in pursuit of pardon or remission of blasphemy conviction

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Prominent Christian lawyer and rights activist Advocate Sooba Bhatti invokes President of Pakistan to pardon Asia Bibi’s capital punishment. Asia Bibi a Pakistan Christian woman was awarded a death sentence after being convicted of blasphemy by a Pakistani court. In his message to the President the Christian lawyer referred to Article 42 of the Constitution of Pakistan and mentioned that the President of Pakistan Mamnoon Hussain had taken an oath in line with Article 42.

Pakistani Christian woman convicted of blasphemy

In his appeal to the President of Pakistan, Advocate Sooba Bhatti had maintained: “Honorable sir Mamnoon Hussain –President of Pakistan, I beseech you to pardon Asia Bibi wife of Ashiq Masih, and mother of five. She was resident of Ittanwali a village in District Sheikhupura, Punjab and worked at a local farm, where she once had a quarrel with her fellow Muslim women over a cup of water. He quarrel ensued blasphemy accusations and eventually death sentence.”

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Asia BiBi- a Pakistan Christian woman who was accused of committing blasphemy was arrested by the police in June 2009, and was charged under 295-C of Pakistan Penal Code. In 2010, a local judge Muhammad Naveed Iqbal handed down death penalty to her along with a penalty of net amount equivalent of $1100.

Advocate Sooba Bhatti emphasized that Asia Bibi has been embroiled as blasphemy allegations brought against her are clearly baseless. She was kept behind the bars in Sheikhupura, later was shifted to Multan Jail. Later on, her death sentence was challenged in Lahore High Court, where her penalty was upheld.

Asia Bibi’s defense counsel Advocate Saif-ul-Malook filed a petition against her death sentence in Supreme Court’s Lahore registry. “Asia Bibi anxiously awaits release from captivity, as she had certainly been guilty of what she has been convicted of.”

“I urge you to exercise your right to pardon the prisoners on death sentence – and bestow pardon upon down trodden Asia Bibi, and order for her immediate release and acquittal.” Advocate Sooba Bhatti further explained: I am hopeful that you will spare some of your valuable time and consider my appeal and take action in order to free an innocent woman.