Mixed gathering: Cleric arrested over dancing death decree

Cleric denies issuing death sentence to six people for dancing, singing together, says his name was being misused.

Afp May 29, 2012

ISLAMABAD: Police on Tuesday arrested a cleric accused of sentencing six people to death for singing and dancing at a wedding in Kohistan.

"Police have arrested a cleric and his companion for issuing the death decree, but they totally denied it," local administration official Aqal Badshah Khattak told AFP.

"The cleric has said he had no role in the decree and his name was misused," Khattak said.

Police told AFP on Monday that clerics sentenced four women and two men to death after mobile phone footage emerged of them enjoying themselves at a village wedding in the mountains of Kohistan district, 175 kilometres north of the capital Islamabad.

The men and women had allegedly danced and sung together in Gada village, in defiance of strict tribal customs that separate men and women at weddings.

But on Tuesday, district police chief Abdul Majeed Afridi said it appeared to be a case of tribal rivalry and an attempt to defame a family.

He said the video was recorded three years ago and then edited in an attempt to implicate the party goers.

"I am satisfied that there is no danger to the life of the girls," he said.

According to the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan, at least 943 women and girls were murdered last year after being accused of defaming their family's honour.


observer | 9 years ago | Reply

Can we try this Mullah under the FCR?

Or, is that reserved for fake vaccination only.

Raj - USA | 9 years ago | Reply

@Ali: Agree with your point on the picture to some extent. It looks like a lady dancing in Indian dress (sari). On your 2nd point that liberals are defaming the religion, I have not read anything from any news item in ET or in the comments from readers that has defamed Islam or any other religion. However, many have mocked the insanity displayed by those who proclaim themselves as the true followers of the religion. The liberals are actually bringing respect to the religion by exposing the insanity practiced by some in the name of religion.

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