Mentally challenged person killed over alleged blasphemy in Shabqadar

Residents say unidentified men had earlier warned that the victim would be declared an apostate

Our Correspondent March 22, 2016

SHABQADAR: Unidentified men killed a mentally challenged person in Shabqadar town of Charsadda district in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa (K-P) for allegedly committing blasphemy.

Police and residence told The Express Tribune that the 50-year-old man was sitting at his shop in the Katozai Malik Abad area Monday evening, when two men riding a motorcycle pulled up and one of them opened fire on him.

Blasphemy law cannot be amended: PUC

According to the victim’s neighbours, the man had been admitted in a mental hospital for a long time. They said the victim used to babble words and thoughts which sounded blasphemous.

Residents said some unidentified men had warned that the victim would be declared an apostate and on Monday evening he was killed.

In a report on the state of human rights, the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan had pointed out that abuse of the blasphemy law continues to take a heavy toll in terms of human lives and harassment of citizens.

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The sheer number of cases registered in the past 25 years suggests the law has been widely abused. Investigations have revealed that often the reasons for the abuse stem from personal enmity, property disputes and religious hatred.

According to a report by the Islamabad-based Centre for Research and Security Studies, over 52 people have been murdered in extrajudicial cases since 1990.

Published in The Express Tribune, March 22nd, 2016.


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