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Published On: Thu, Jul 14th, 2016

Pakistan: Christian man charged with blasphemy over WhatsApp poem

A Christian man has been charged under blasphemy law section 295-C, which has a mandatory death penalty, for allegedly sending his Muslim friend a poem on Whatsapp that was considered insulting and derogatory towards Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) and other holy figures.

The police have registered a case against Nadeem James and are searching for him as he has fled his home in fear, to save his life.

It is being said that James, a resident of Father Colony of Sraey Alamgir, has some petty dispute with Yasir Bashir who alleged that he defiled the name of the Prophet Mohammad.

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A WhatsApp poem lands a Pakistani man with a blasphemy charge

There have been calls from mosque loudspeakers for local Muslims to gather and burn homes of Christians in Father Colony if James Nadeem is not produced at the police station.

But to avoid the situation escalating, the police has increased the security in the area, but are still looking for Nadeem.

According to reports, Sraey Alamgir Police have raided Nadeem’s house and have arrested his two sisters, Najma and Samreen, and tortured them to produce their brother.

Nasir Saeed Director CLAAS-UK condemned the police for arresting Nadeem’s sisters as it is not just illegal but is not acceptable in Pakistani society. Instead of investigating the matter they are using such tricks to pressurise the family to produce the wanted person.

He continued: “It is very unfortunate that blasphemy cases continue to be registered against Christians over petty disputes without any investigation or concrete evidence.

“Several innocent people like Shama and Shahzad have been killed and burnt alive without being given them a chance to prove themselves innocent in a court of justice.

“Sadly, incidents of self-justice and mob killings continue to be rise, and people are not afraid of taking the law into their own hands because of the government’s inadvertence and lack of interest in bringing the perpetrators to the justice, and its failure to think over bringing changes to the blasphemy law to stop its continuous misuse.”

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About the Author

- Director CLAAS-UK About CLAAS: Centre for Legal Aid, Assistance and Settlement (CLAAS) is an interdenominational organisation working for Christians who are being persecuted because of their faith in Pakistan. CLAAS works for religious freedom, to stop persecution of Christians in Pakistan because of blasphemy and other discriminatory laws, raise awareness, disseminate information and highlight the plight of Christians on an international level. CLAAS provides free legal aid to victims of religious intolerance in Pakistan, as well as shelter and financial support for the victims and their families.

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