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Christian man arrested for online ‘blasphemy’

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Police in Punjab’s district Sheikhupura arrested a man for allegedly posting blasphemous content on social media.

“The suspect, Usman Masih, a resident of Nabipura posted blasphemous text on a social networking website, following which residents of the area lodged a complaint against him”, Dawn said while quoting District Police Officer (DPO) Sarfraz Khan Virk.

He said police registered a case under the blasphemy law against the suspect who was later arrested.

Initial investigations showed that the blasphemous messages were posted last year by another man, who was now living abroad, the DPO said.

No complaint was filed against the man living abroad, he added.

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The DPO said the social media account through which the blasphemous text was posted had been dormant for the last eight to nine months. He said detailed investigation was continuing to verify the account details.

According to sources, police were also looking into a dispute over teasing of girls following which the complaint against the suspect was lodged.

An FIR was lodged after Ahsan Hasmat, a resident of the area, filed a complaint against the suspect at Factory Area Police Station.

Muhammad Khan Sherani, the head of Pakistan’s top religious body, has said he is willing to review blasphemy laws and see whether sentences as harsh as the death penalty were fair.

The chairman of Council of Islamic Ideology (CII) told an international news agency on Thursday that he was willing to reopen the debate on blasphemy laws – that critics say are regularly misused and have led to the deaths of hundreds – to decide if they are Islamic.

 

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