Blasphemy law ruckus: Abrogation not on the cards, mechanism to prevent misuse to be evolved

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Senate’s Functional Committee on Human Rights expressed unanimity on chalking out a mechanism in order to efficaciously prevent misuse of the blasphemy laws. In this regard series of meetings will be held inviting counsels from religious representatives, legal experts, civil society and the members of the Council of Islamic Ideology Council.

Calls to repeal blasphemy law in Pakistan

During a meeting held on Tuesday August 16, Chairperson of the committee Senator Nasreen Jalil asserted that repealing the law was not on the card while the committee will certainly look for ways to halt misuse of the controversial law. She further clarified that the committee unanimously agreed to the fact that no innocent person must be embroiled in this legislation-at the same time said that Muslims have suffered misuse of this law more than non-Muslims.

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During the meeting, Pakistan People’s Party’s Farhatullah Babar said that the need to prevent misuse of this legislation has now become imperative. He suggested that the issue need to be tacked by means of positive and wide-ranging plan of action. PML-N’s Senator Nisar Muhammad advised that the law under discussion is no ordinary law-therefore there is a great deal of care and caution while dealing with the matter.

National Party’s Mir Kabeer said that amendments to legislations are out of question as it hardly imaginable, while expressed his reservations over the misuse of the law. At the same time, Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaaf’s Senator Samina Abid asserted that out of all blasphemy cases recorded thus far, around 80 percent involved innocent citizens entangled fallaciously in the blasphemy charges.

Appraising the discussion, Justice (R) Ali Nawaz Chohan Chairman of National Commission on Human Rights stated that his commission had furnished recommendations in order to deal with the subject. He said that one the recommendations included that such cases must not be probed by a police officer less than the rank of SSP, the district and sessions judge should hear the case.