Pakistani journalist and daughter of former Punjab governor Salmaan Taseer, Shehrbano Taseer, received a Human Rights Award during an annual award dinner in New York City on Saturday.
In the months since her father’s slaying, Shehrbano has continued to speak out publicly against discriminatory laws that target religious minorities and encourage extremism, said a press release issued by Human Rights First.
Despite criticism and even death threats from militant groups, Shehrbano has worked unremittingly to shed light on the hundreds of victims of Pakistan’s blasphemy laws and to encourage the government to take necessary steps to promote religious tolerance, the press release added.
Human Rights First will honour Shehrbano “for her courage in carrying out her father’s legacy of religious tolerance.” She has published a series of op-ed pieces calling for change in Pakistan, and has openly criticised those who glorify her father’s murderer, said the press release.
She was instrumental in the United Nations Human Rights Council’s groundbreaking resolution in Geneva this March that seeks to address violence, discrimination, and incitement to religious hatred without the controversial notion of “defamation of religions,” the statement said, adding that her courage has led some to characterise the young journalist as “one of the bravest women in today’s Pakistan”.
Published in The Express Tribune, October 23rd, 2011.