Paul Bhatti, former federal minister for National Harmony and current leader of the All Pakistan Minorities Alliance expresses concern over death of blasphemy accused Christian Zafar Bhatti in Adiala Jail Rawalpindi.
“Events like this, in which people mete out ‘justice’ on their own, are a worrying sign. The man was in prison and it was the state’s duty to protect him and ensure his safety, despite the charges against him,” said Paul Bhatti.
45-year-old Rev Zafar Bhatti whose lifeless body was found September 25 morning in his cell in Rawalpindi’s Adyala prison where he was held pending trial. A policeman of the Elite Force allegedly gunned him down.
Until “we reach that goal,” he warned, “we cannot hope for justice,” which should be “guaranteed to all,” even to those accused of blasphemy, “regardless of whether or not that person is innocent or guilty.” “The fact that he was killed in prison goes to show that the legal system and the rule of law are very weak in Pakistan,” Paul Bhatti explained.
“Pakistan has to change with regards to this,” he added, because “law, justice and freedom of expression must prevail.”