Court-Sanctioned Murder of Women and Minorities in Islamist Pakistan

Democracy, Freedom of Expression, Human Rights are still distant dreams in the Islamist country that institutionalized murder of women and minorities through uncivilized and anarchic sharia-based laws.

Pakistan, an Islamist nation in South-Asian region, is known to the world for harboring Islamist terrorists and extremists. After carving itself from secular and democratic India in 1947 on the basis of religious identity, the country and its institutions continue to remain under the influence of orthodox Islamic laws that deny fundamental rights to women and minorities. Over the years, many progressive scholars, social reformers and citizens, who dared to question the archaic practices of Islam or the Islamist regimes of Pakistan, were labeled blasphemic and were either executed by judicial institutions or brutally lynched by street mobs.

Blasphemy, as applicable to Islamic mythology, forbids any reasonable questioning of its God or scriptures. Those who attempt to break such oppressive stereotypes, even with noble intention to seek knowledge, are deemed blasphemous and are meted with dire consequences in Islamic nations around the world, including Pakistan. Many human rights groups continue to expose the Muslim-nationalist regimes and extremist religious leaders of Pakistan, for abusing blasphemy laws to systemically persecute lower-caste Muslims, women and religious minorities.

In such recent incident, Salma Tanvir, a woman principle of a Lahore-based school was awarded death sentence by a Pakistani court for allegedly questioning the finality of Mohammad, who Muslims consider as their prophet. The case dates back to 2013 in which, Tanvir was accused of blasphemy by local Islamist groups. Though Tanvir’s council claimed that she is ‘mentally unstable’, the Islamist court ignored the plea and proclaimed the judgment.

The brutality of the scripturally-mandated blasphemy laws becomes evident when even innocent children or people with disabilities are not spared from their clutches. In 2017, an intellectually-challenged Christian teenager was arrested for allegedly burning Quran. In 2021, an 8-year old Hindu boy was arrested for alleged urinating on a Mosque’s premises. Both victims, their families and their communities continue to live in constant fear of being lynched by Islamist mobs.

Accusing fellow citizens of blasphemy, unleashing lynch mobs and death threats is not limited to Islamist nations. Even in secular and democratic India, many radical Islamists, who enjoy patronage from sections of Indian political, academic and media groups, extend such terror onto fellow Indians. In 2007, Taslima Nasreen, a progressive Muslim scholar, was almost lynched by Islamists in Hyderabad. Jammu & Kashmir, a Muslim-majoritarian state in India and home to many Islamist extremists and terrorists, witnessed many communal riots in the name of blasphemy. Islamic extremists of Kerala rioted and destroyed Indian property for a blasphemic incident in France.

It is crucial for civilized world and United Nations to implement measures such as political, economic and diplomatic sanctions to stop gross human rights violations in Islamist Pakistan, and hold Imran Khan’s Muslim-nationalist regime accountable for atrocities on women, children and minorities. It is equally essential for human-rights groups and progressive Muslims to continue to rise their voice against radical Islamism.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *