Officials investigating Rimsha Masih’s blasphemy case have until September 28 to respond to a petition seeking the annulment of the FIR against her.
The Islamabad High Court (IHC) on Tuesday issued notices to Ramna Police SHO Qasim Niazi, IO Munir Jafri and complainant Hammad Malik over a petition filed by Rimsha’s family seeking the annulment of the FIR charging her with blasphemy.
Rimsha’s lawyer argued that the FIR was registered on August 16 with mala fide intentions. He said that three witnesses have already recorded their statement against Khalid Jadoon Chishti, the prayer leader who handed Rimsha over to the police, saying that he had tampered with the evidence, by adding pages with Quranic verses on them to the ashes, to get her family to leave the area. The witnesses include Hafiz Zubair, the moazzin (prayer caller) of the mosque.
The lawyer argued that the police had declared Rimsha innocent in the interim charge sheet. He also requested the court to restrain the police from harassing his client.
Earlier on September 24, a trial court had sent Rimsha to a juvenile court after a medical report said she is 14 years old. District and Session Judge Raja Jawad Abbas had directed police to submit a fresh charge-sheet in accordance with juvenile laws on October 1.
Before that, on September 22, the police had declared Chishti guilty and said that they had no evidence against Rimsha. She and her family are currently at an undisclosed location after Rimsha’s bail was made on September 7.
Published in The Express Tribune, September 26th, 2012.