Govt not proceeding against TV for ‘obvious reasons’

BAHAWALPUR

MNA Jamshed Dasti has said that the nation will not tolerate blasphemy and Pemra should take stern action against the private TV channel for broadcasting sacrilegious content. He warned that if the government did not take action against the TV channel then it would itself responsible for the consequences. Addressing “Meet The Press” programme of Bahawalpur Press Club here on Monday, Dasti demanded the Chief Justice of Pakistan to take notice of the issue immediately. He accused both the PML-N and PPP backing the Geo and Jang group, saying that the government did not willing to take action against the media group.

He pointed out that the district administration and Principal Quaid-e-Azam Medical College should have played their role for the resolution of issues being faced by the doctors, adding that the Punjab Health Minister and the Health secretary for failure to tackle issues of the young doctor.

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Blasphemy, blasphemy everywhere

Sir: Whoever thinks that weaving a web of venom to entrap others will save them from getting poisoned needs to read the writing on the wall. Pakistanis are now entangled in a web of blasphemy wherein this poison is thundering day and night. This venomous disease is now entrapping its makers; no one can forget the unfortunate scenes of the governor of Punjab being shot dead by no one else than his own security guard, and later the same guard being garlanded by the so-called protectors of the law, the lawyers of Rawalpindi. Just recently, a human rights activist and lawyer, Rashid Rehman, who was representing a blasphemy victim in a court of law, was openly threatened by his fellow lawyers in the presence of a presiding judge. Later, Rehman was gunned down in his office. The lawyer who threatened Rehman and the judge who turned a blind eye are very much there in their chambers, doing roaring business.

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Pakistan: Investigate Killing of Rights Lawyer

(New York) – Pakistani authorities should conduct a prompt and impartial investigation into the May 7, 2014 killing of human rights activist and lawyer Rashid Rehman, Human Rights Watch said today. Those responsible should be fully and promptly prosecuted.

Rehman’s killing, an apparent reprisal for his willingness to represent people charged under Pakistan’s blasphemylaw, underscores the urgent need for the government to repeal that law, Human Rights Watch said.

Two unidentified gunmen killed Rehman in his office in Multan, Punjab province. Several weeks earlier, Rehman had been threatened with “dire consequences” for defending Junaid Hafeez, a lecturer at Bahauddin Zakariya University who was facing prosecution under Pakistan’s blasphemy law. Hafeez allegedly disseminated blasphemous statements via his Facebook account, though it is not known what he said, since republishing the statement could lead to blasphemy charges against those who republish it.

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Pakistani police charge 68 lawyers with blasphemy over protest

By: Syed Raza Hassan

ISLAMABAD (Reuters) - Pakistani police have registered a case of blasphemy against 68 lawyers who made a public protest after a police officer detained one of their colleagues, officials said on Tuesday, the latest in a tidal wave of such accusations flooding the country.

Analysts say the surge in accusations is a worrying sign the nuclear-armed nation of 180 million people is becoming less tolerant as militant ideas enter mainstream politics.

The colonial-era law does not define blasphemy, but the charge carries the death penalty. Presenting evidence can be considered a new infringement, so judges are reluctant to hear cases.

Judges who free those accused of blasphemy have been attacked and two politicians who suggested reforming the law were shot dead. Those acquitted have often been lynched.

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Being gay in Pakistan: Where anti-gay serial killers are applauded

LAHORE, Pakistan — Sitting at a coffee shop in a posh Lahore neighborhood, two young men hold a heated debate over the serial killer caught killing gay men in their city last month.

“Gay rights are human rights,” says one, arguing that gays have the right to live openly here. This is Pakistan, the other countered. “It is best to let these things stay unsaid, and underground – it's not okay in this society.” It’s a debate so fundamental that it might, at this point, sound hackneyed to a Western audience — yet in Pakistan it’s rare to hear such openness even in a private discussion. 

In late April, a young man named Muhammed Ejaz confessed to killing three gay men over the past two months because he wanted to send a warning about the “evils” of homosexuality.

The 28-year-old paramedic from Lahore said he had lured his victims through a gay social networking site manjam.com and killed them following a sexual encounter in their own homes.

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