Supreme Court on Wednesday stayed the execution of Aasia Bibi, a Christian woman sentenced to death for alleged blasphemy.
A three-member bench of the Supreme Court granted leave to appeal to Aasia Bibi and stated that it is essential to examine her case for administration of justice.
Further, the apex court suspended the decision of Lahore High Court (LHC) which had upheld her death sentence. An objection was raised by the SC over the 11-day- delay in filing the appeal. However, it said that this objection would be taken up in the next hearing of the case.
The LHC had upheld Aasia’s death sentence last year. Aasia, 49, a mother of five, has been in jail since 2009 and on death row since November 2010 when she was found guilty by a subordinate court of making blasphemous remarks during an argument with a Muslim woman.
Two high-profile politicians – the then Punjab governor Salmaan Taseer and federal minister Shahbaz Bhatti – were murdered in 2011 after calling for reform of blasphemy law and describing Bibi’s trial as flawed.
According to her statement, she was working in a field when she was asked to fetch water. Several Muslim women labourers objected, saying that as a non-Muslim she should not touch the water bowl. At that point, they had an altercation and exchanged harsh worlds. Aasia said the women later levelled blasphemy allegations against her in connivance with the wife of Qari Salaam.