Kangaroo Justice for Blasphemy Victims:
Last year in July 2013crippled Christian man, Shafaqat Emmanuel, and his wife,Shagufta Kausar, were arrested in Gojra District for allegedly sending blasphemous text messages to the local Muslims. You can find their full story on the following link:
Shafaqat Emmanuel who is crippled and has no sensation in his lower parts of his body is being detained in a Toba Tek Singh Jail along with his wife. In the meantime four children along with their grandfather Emmanuel Masih were given shelter by the Us ( WVIP)
Over the last six months our advocates have been making their best efforts to get relief from the Session Court and High Court of Lahore. Earlier, the session court had denied the bail application of Shagufta Kausar and similarly High Court of Lahore denied the bail application (bearing number 13876/13) last week and directed the Additional Session Court to complete the trail within 60 days.
Mr. Justice SayyedMazahar Ali Akbar Naqvi wasinitially convinced with the argument of defense. However, following pressure from Muslim clerics and the local bar of Gojar City he was forced to deny bail and directed the trail judge to conclude the whole case within 2 months. During the case complaint proceedings Muslims clerics threatened the defense lawyers many times. Even one of the ban outfits has sent threatening letters to the office of our advocates to discourage them from defending the couple.
When our lawyers went to Toba Tek Singh jail on the trial date, they were again threatening with dire consequences. In response to the threat, we filed the Transfer Petition with the High Court.This was turnined down by the Seating Mr. Justice Sh. Najam-UL-Hasan who also directed the Additional Session Judge to conclude the case soon as possible.
However, Mian Amir Habib, the Additional Session Judge, is biased and is openly supporting the complainants and their lawyers. We don’t know whether this is due to fear or sympathy to their action.
According to our observations Mian Amir Habib has set his mind to sentence the couple; we know what is going on in this Kangaroo trial! We believe that he will give the death sentence to this crippled man and 35 years imprisonment to the uneducated Shagufta Kausar for sending text message.
We do not know why Human Rights Organizations around the world do not see such injustice in Pakistan, where Law is been used as a prostitute. Instead of giving justice to these persecuted people Judges are giving them sentences.
Imagine a man who cannot go to the washroom or take bath without anyone’s help, how he is surviving? Last night we received a call from the jail that Shafaqat has been moved to the jail hospital and is in a really bad condition. Today when our team reached the jail we found that he is in hospital due to multiple bed sores and that soon he will need surgery because his sores are more than 3 inches deep. We don’t know how long Shafaqat will survive in this condition.
We would request the International Community to raise its voice for this persecuted couple and their four children.