Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Blasphemy laws-Amendment required?

Blasphemy laws in Pakistan have been critized lately.It seems to have two parties concerning the issue.
One who wants the blasphemy laws to be amended or reviewed and the second who wants no change in it.I shall try to describe what blasphemy actually is and what Islam orders us about blaspehmours in the light of Quran.
Blasphemy is“offense of speaking sacrilegiously about God or sacred things”. Countries use blasphemy laws to victimize non-members of, and dissident members of, the ruling sect or cult. Countries with a state religion are the most punitive users of blasphemy laws.[8][9][9][10][11] 

Blasphemy in Judaism:
In the third book of the Torah, Leviticus 24:16 states that those who speak blasphemy "shall surely be put to death"by stoning.The blasphemer was to be taken outside the camp, and all who heard him should lay their hands upon his head; then all the congregation should stone him. Leviticus also provides an example of an Israelite mixed blood (having an Egyptian father) being stoned to death after getting into a fight with a Hebrew and cursing the Name of the Hebrew God.
Ref: Blasphemy in Judanism

 Blasphemy in Christianity:
Christian theology condemns blasphemy. One verse from the Bible that directly concerns the sin reads as follows:
Thou shalt not take the name of the LORD thy God in vain; for the LORD will not hold him guiltless that taketh his name in vain. (Exodus 20:7 KJV)
In addition, it is spoken of in the Mark 3:29, where blaspheming the Holy Spirit is spoken of as unforgivable - the eternal sin.Blasphemy has been condemned as a serious, or even the most serious, sin by the major creeds and Church theologians.A seventeenth century Act Concerning Religion in Maryland stated that whoever shall "Blaspheme GOD, that is curse him, or deny that JESUS CHRIST our Savior to be the Son of God, or deny the Holy Trinity… shall be punished with death, and forfeiture of all of his or her Lands and Goods…."[1] 

Blasphemy in other religions:
There are no formal concepts of blasphemy in Budhism and Hinduism yet the Buddhist Eightfold Path requires a practitioner to cultivate "right speech," which includes no abusive language, gossip, lying, or slander.        Moreover,despite the general tolerance and pluralism of the Hindu religion, the attitude of some Hindus toward people of Veda-rejecting faiths, such as Jains and Buddhists, is similar to those who condemn blasphemy.  

Blasphemy Laws in several countries:
Blasphemy laws exist in several countries, such as in: Austria (Articles 188, 189 of the penal code); Denmark (Paragraph 140); Finland (Section 10 of chapter 17); Germany (Article 166); Greece; Ireland; Iceland; Italy; The Netherlands (Article 147 of the penal code); New Zealand Section 123 of the Crimes Act 1961); Norway (section 142 of the the Norwegian Penal Code never applied); Spain (Article 525 of the penal code); and Switzerland (Article 261 of the penal code).

Blasphemy in Islam:
Blasphemy in Islam constitutes speaking ill God, of the prophet Muhammad, any other prophet mentioned in the Qur'an, or of any biblical prophets.For those who blaspheme by attacking the Qur'an or the Prophet, the Qur'an says that the punishment shall be "execution, or crucifixion, or the cutting off of hands and feet from opposite sides, or exile from the land: That is their disgrace in this world, and a heavy punishment is theirs in the Hereafter" (Surah Al-Maidah 5:33).
Read about punishment of blasphemy in light of religious scriptures.
Ref:Wikipedia and Blasphemy in different religions.

Blasphemy in Pakistan:
Hence it has been proved that blasphemy laws are not only a product of Islam but all religions have similar concepts.As other religions announce strickest of punishment for blasphemers,Islam also condems it by putting blasphemer to death.In Pakistan Blasphemy laws were introduced by General Zia ul Haq.Christians in Paksitan and all across the world with the support of Muslims protested against Da Vinci as they found it blasphemous
Saying things like Blasphemy Law have deprived minorities of religious freedom and violated their rights as citizens
is like being baseless and unaware of the real facts,because no religion preaches blasphemy.Infact all religions condemn it.Quoting Molana Ibtasam Ilahi Zaheer:"In quran para 19, first rakoo a whole incident has been mentioned where Holy Prophet himself killed a person who would make fun of his face.Naouzubillah."
Reference:Ummat newspaper 24 november 2010  page 3

If someone is charged of blasphemy,he or she should be taken to the court.Let the court decides him/her guilty.If he/she is convicted by court then no one else can repeal the law.LAws can be misused,I agree but we arenot wise enough to judge it.Nowadays,non-Muslims and Muslims even from Pakistan are talking about abondoning blasphemy law as it is the source of crushing minorities. I would like such people to answer me the following questions:
1.Why the making of minarates has been banned in some countries?
2.Why A lady shaheeda tul Hijab was murdered in COURT only cause she wanted to cover her head ?(no action was taken against the murderer)
3.Why in France you are not allowed to wear a head covering?
4.Why in US you are forced to get bodily screened-it shows your body nude.Why dont they respect about our concerns?isnt it insulting?

Now people say that religion and state both are different.They say that while thinking of Paksitan keep Islam aside.They have forgotten may be,that Pakistan was formed on the name of Allah.It is not only a piece of land for which our ancestors sacrfices their lives-but it is a place which we got to practise our religion Islam.It doesnot mean that minorities are given no importance.They are free in here,They can worship their gods,can build their temples and churches.10 seats are reserved for religious minorities in constitution of Paksitan.Even people of Paksitan show love and affection by celebrating christmas etc.Malls are public places are decorated with misletoes and baubles. Then how can anyone question about rights of minorties in Paksitan?

I think I'm clear enough in defending my point of view.Everyone is welcomed to share their views but please no hate speech as you ca not notice any here.

NOTE: Ibtisam Elahi Zaheer is Secretary General of Jamat Ahle Hadis Pakistan.His quote included in this post couldnot be varified.Author is trying to contact the newspaper and the scholar for rectification/explanation.Kindly accept the apologies for the mental trouble and annoyance.Thanks

Update:Author has finally managed to contact Ebtisam Elahi Zaheer.He has explained everything in detail with references. A very kind information that the Quote from him (incidence referred from Quran) was definitely right and authentic.All those readers who were too arrogant to hear anything earlier must read the next post.Its a request that next time before passing any harsh comments to anyone i.e calling someone a blasphmere one should think very carefully.YOU SHOULD BELIEVE SCHOLARS OF TIME!Since you are not in a position with your limited knowledge to challenge them!This shall be a good lesson to those who are double in age than author but have learnt nothing from life experiences.May Allah help us all!


Syeda Zehra said...

that's wonderful.
You did a wonderful job by making this post which shows how much research you would have done for it.
Great work.
May god give a lot of "sawab" for this.

ReeBz said...

Thanks Zehra.Do share it if you think its worth it.Thanks:)

Aishah said...

1.While many people have so called reasons for the banning of minaret, I personally think that it is at least partly caused by bigotry. There are people that are concerned that Muslims are not integrating into society, but banning minarets really does nothing to help do that. While I don't really see this as oppression, considering that they are not banning Masjids, it is still a strange move, and I disagree with what they are doing.

2.I do not know this story, can you give me a link so that I can read about it?

3.You can wear hijab in France, but not in government institutions that are providing a free service to citizens-like schools. It is not just hijab that is banned, all religious symbols are banned- cross necklaces, stars of david, kippahs and sikh turbans are also not allowed. They claim that it is because France is a completely secular society and no one religion wil be given preference over another. I believe that hijab is not banned in private schools, because they are not under the authority of the government. So yes this is kind of religious oppression, but it is equally applied to all religions.

4.No one is forced to go through the back-scatter x-ray machine. It is not required, you can "opt out" if you have medical or personal modesty concerns. If you opt out you will have to get a personal pat down by a security officer of the same gender in a private room. This is the same type of pat down you will receive going into Jinnah International Airport here in Karachi. I have gone through this several times going on a motorcycle into the airport and also through security inside to board a flight. The pat downs are offered so that your personal modesty is preserved as much as possible, so they are showing concern for our views in this as much as is possible. I also do not agree with the scanning but there are reasons for what they are doing.

Dumb said...

Assalamuallaikun. Nice work but seems like a good amount of copy paste. It would be gernerous of you to disclose the source at the end of the blog.

any ways nice work.... KIP

Anonymous said...

it shouldnt require amendement it has itself included another section which shows the right of minorities .....but unfortunately they dont apply it im soon going to post that on my blog..

Peerless said...

A daring post and good one too, I want to add some points.Blasphemy laws are amended from Act XLV of 1860 in 1986 by Zia's regime.Section 295-C, Constitution of Pakistan states,
'Use of derogatory remarks, etc., in respect of the Holy Prophet. Whoever by words, either spoken or written, or by visible representation, or by any imputation, innuendo, or insinuation, directly or indirectly, defiles the sacred name of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) shall be punished with death, or imprisonment for life, and shall also be liable to fine."
I think there is nothing wrong with the law itself but the procedure of its implementation is not good at all and it needs to be changed. Just think for a while, given the situation of our judiciary who will decide that someone has made derogatory remarks (naoozbillah), as it is a serious crime and the offender(declared) may be stonned to death as a result. The same was case with Hudood laws as they were quite often used to settle personal scores. Blasphemy laws have been repeatedly used in pakistan for wrong reasons and as a result many innocents have been killed. So a change in its procedure is not a change in the law itself, a committee of senior lawyers, lawmakers and religious scholars should be formed to have a review of the procedure and propose a change if required.
Moreover I watched Shahbaz Bhatti saying that our constitution proposes death penalty for the shatmeen of Hazrat Mohammad (peace be upon him) while a two years imprisonment for shatmeen of other prophets (AS), I am not quite sure but if so then it also need to be reviewed.

R. Ramesh said...

very informative piece..wishes friend:)

Hasaan Rafique said...

I read the post and found it very informative and well-researched :)
I agree with the author's point of view, the laws of blasphemy are defined in every religion, and can not, and should not, be changed. It is nothing AGAINST the minorities. It is more of a right earned by members of every religion, that their holy people and things should be respected. Failure to comply to it is the fault of the one who does it. It should be kept in mind that not only the minorities, but even those Muslims or so who do similar things are subjected to the same rules.

Thinking said...

Dear ReeBz...

I will ask you the same question, which I have asked in my blog....

PLease tell me about this paragraph:

Quoting Molana Ibtasam Ilahi Zaheer:"In quran para 19, first rakoo a whole incident has been mentioned where Holy Prophet himself killed a person who would make fun of his face.Naouzubillah."

I think Quran Shareef is available in every home of a Muslim...

Please do check and tell me if you find the same incident anywhere in the holy book?

If not....than please tell me....what kind of message you are displaying to the world....?

ReeBz said...

What so ever. Whether religious opression is applied to all other riligons, it still is equal to suppressing other minorities.

Strange,its you from whom i m hearing that you can opt out for that body screening.I can find no proofs.Even Paksitan VIPs are not free from it.Imran khan had to pass though those scanners.My cousin recently came back from america,she also told same.May be you are allowed to opt out as you have US citizenship.

Saying simply that what they are doing,they have reasons for it doesnot make sense to me.Ofcourse,everyone has reasons.We too have reasons for the codes of ethics and blasphemy law!No one should object them then.

ReeBz said...

Thanks for coming here and giving this article a thorough read.
I'm not a religious scholar therefore i cannot offer my personal researches.Even if i make a research no one would believe me without authentic references as I'm not recognized as a scholar.
My blog is all about OPINIONS and to strengthen those opinions i take help of references.
Anyways, thanks for appreciation and syour suggestion.I shall consider it in my next posts :)

ReeBz said...

I'm glad to see that finally a professional lawyer is here.Who has not only read this post but has also appreciated it.I just checked your blog.Will inshaAllah read your post regarding blasphemy.

ReeBz said...

I had been avoiding on writing this topic as it is a very sensitive issue and needs lots of care.But i was tired of posting here and there again and again.Now as i have combined all references here,it is definitely gonna save me from the future typing at various forums about blasphemy law.

Dear,i agree that laws are misused many times.But the person who is accused is given a full chance in court to defent himself and prove himself innocent.Similarly the one who establishes a case in court against someone MUST prove the person guilty by presenting eyewitnesses. If he fails, then he should also be punished.

If on the otherhand, accused cant prove himself innocent then he desrves punishment.Its a rule and a bench of judges decide it.After courts verdict we are no one to repeal laws.Still if some one wants, he or she may appeal for mercy on the behalf of blasphemer..!!(If you are dying in the love of blasphemer.anyone with common sense will not challenge court ofcourse)

ReeBz said...

Dear friend thank you so much for appreciation :)

ReeBz said...

Hasaan Rafique:
Thanks for sharing your views.I'm honored.

ReeBz said...


Dear HR,I will reply same which i have replied you at your blog.
You know I'm no one to invent anything naouzubillah.I didnot say it on my own.I quoted renowned scholar Ebtisam Elahi Zaheer.You may ofcourse doubt me but you will not doubt a scholar.Same happened with me and i quoted him without checking it myself.
Anyhow,I read translation,its true that there is no such incident mentioned in translation.But you may find it in TAFSEER.I'm still researching on it and I'll provide you the authentic material.

Scholar Ebtasam Elahi is secretary general of Jamat ahle Hadees PAksitan and masters in 11 subjects which is also a record and is mentioned in guinnese book of world record.I reckon,you or me with a limited knowledge are no one to suspect his qualifications.Its just this that Quran is a complex book.We need help of scholars and alims to understand it.Many times isseues are not as open as you may expect. I believe there much be a historical background linked with that rakoo.Cause Such a renowned scholar just cant invent things naouzubillah.

Strange, you are just looking at one thing.I have given several proofs from quran which also strenghthen our current blasphemy laws, dont they matter to you dear HR?Mind sharing your views?

Peerless said...

You are cent percent right but I meant to say that no one is allowed to decide himself the fate of a blasphemer as it happened in many cases in Pakistan. I do agree and I have mentioned too that the law itself is based on Islamic spirit but its implemntation procedure may be changed. And if a person put wrong and false allegations on an innocent and can not prove it, He/She should also be punished with the same intensity the blasphemer is sposed to be treated. But as far as my little knowledge concerns this is not the case in pakistan and people settle their own anemities under the cover of blasphemy. Please be aware that many judges and magistrates have also faced life threats and attacks for freeing alleged blasphemers in past, so no judge can be unbiased in giving verdict on blasphemy cases. I strongly propose that a seperate bench or commission should be formed to specially deal the blasphemy cases and they should not be treated as normal ones.

Peerless said...

Moreover regarding the courts of Pakistan, their history is terribly dark and full of injustice. These are the same courts which hanged Bhutto, give legitimacy to Zia and Musharraf and always made the wrong decisions on the pressure of anti-state elements, so personally speaking I can not believe blindly in courts to decide the fate of a human being. For implementing Islamic laws Islam have clearly mentioned the qualifications for the qazi's and munsif's, please do a research and then decide which judge or magistrate qualifies the crieterion set by Islam.

Aishah said...

@Reebz, How can it be a suppression of minorities if the rules are applied equally to all religions? That is the exact opposite of what you are saying.

Here is the TSA's post regarding the opt out and pat downs-

You do not have to be a citizen to opt out of the scanners, you just have to tell them you don't want to go through it. Your cousins story and that of Imran Khan are not proof, only anecdotes. Perhaps you need to research this a bit more.

Also regarding the newspaper quote-I have checked both tafseer ibn katheer and a tafseer from mufti Muhammad Taqi Usmani(Maktaba Ma'ariful Qur'an) and I can find no evidence of the story that you have quoted. Is it possible that you may have mistranslated or misunderstood what the scholar has said?

When I first read the quote I felt a pain in my heart that such a negative thing could be said about the Prophet(saws) when there are so many Hadith that narrate his love, mercy and compassion.

Thinking said...

hm....ok....Dear time when you start your statement....with....IT IS WRITTEN IN QURAN better read it in QURAN SHAREEF....or you just mention the name of the people who think or believed that its in QURAN SHAREEF.

I know QURAN SHAREEF is a bit complex....but its words are clear and no where ALLAH had twisted HIS words....

All I wanted you to look into the QURAN SHAREEF yourself and I hope its gives you a good lesson for not quoting the Holy Book without checking it yourself.

Because quoting QURAN SHAREEF when you don't even read the matter in a sin.

I hope you know how wrongly you portrayed our Prophet(PBUH) who never ever killed anyone in his(pbuh)life....I hope you have understand the severity of your words....

For other the law of blasphemy and Asia Bibi....

We both have over own understanding...and I think that you don't want conversation or discussion on any of the issues...May Allah help you. was very kind of you to take out time.

Thanks !

Thinking said... is such a controversial and vilan if mis-used....

and thats the problem here in Pakistan...

We mis-use our law and rules....

And thats what my point is....

I know...Blesphemy is a sin...but most of the time...people are taking this law into their favour and punishing the minorities here...

I strongly believe that if people (who) thinks that Asia Bibi has done something wrong...they should have captured and show the court proceedings on national television channels.

Its Afia case...we don't know anything about the proceedings and the trial and all of us are only beating about the BUSH....

However, by seeing peoples over reacting on the issue....on television channels and newspapers and common gathering....

I wonder...what's feeding their stomach?

The poor woman blood or their so called superiority?


ReeBz said...

I agree with you that the procedure of implementing blasphemy law may need an amendment but still i Donot think that Asiya should be forgiven.I have a firm belief that she is guilty.Therefore all the high authorities of PAksitan are busy in protecting her.There are several innocents who are pushed and trapped into fake cases but no attention is paid to them.I just cant understand why our crimilas are protected by US everytime.Pity we couldnot doa nything to save the honour of our daughter Afia but all high officials have become active to protect a blasphmeer.
Let suppose that she has been trapped into this case,we should still not forgive her.Instead she should be imprisoned for few months atleast.This will discourage others to blaspheme.
On the other hand if she is forgiven and sent to america then it will encourage all the poor people of paksitan to take such henious steps in order to secure a better future.
When every religion has laws to protect te honour of holy beings then why not us?

ReeBz said...

Pardon.sometimes things are not said in the same way as they are perceived by others.I simply mean that if you are oppressing all other religions equally,then its even a more big crime.i,e no religion can enjoy freedom in your area. Suppose in PAksitan we restrict hindus,christians,jews etc to some extent equally then will stay quiet?No,then there will be even a more intense moment against Paksitan.
I simply meant oppressing any religion isnot a good thing unless it is conflicting to your religion like this caseof blasphemy.

As far as that quotation from Ebtisam Elahi is concerned,I'm having same issues which you people felt.I will tomoorw morning talk with the newspaper editor who published the interview.I think rather than forming our own views it is better to ask him directly.No one can explain it better than him!

ReeBz said...

Thats something hilarious.Have you ever been shown any court preecedings at televisons?You may howover amend this law for future use and make it compulsory to show proceedings at TV.

I did mention the source.I may have left it earlier though(human error is everywhere.I definitely read the translation and tafseer both.thatswhy i was able to summarise what Allah has talked about in the particular rakoo.Anyhow,it was my mistake that i quoted it here,but that time i hadnot made any research i just quoted it cause i believe Scholars and its common to every one.
I'll talk to the newspaper editor tomorrow who published that interview.Lets see what he says and how he explains it.
As i have clarified it that those words were not from me,therefore i cant take it back.Even if they are wrong naouzubillah then speaker is responsible not me.

"We both have over own understanding...and I think that you don't want conversation or discussion on any of the issues..."

You should think carefully before making any assuptions.It may be you who donot want any conversation.I have raised many things in my blog post but it seems you just wanted to criticise so you took out only a "conflicted material" from it.On the other hand you think staying silent on the other mentioned issues are better.
"May Allah help you."
hmmm,I take it as a taunt.however i donot mind it HR.I need Allah's help all the time.Thank you. but i pray that may Allah helps not only me but also you.
There is a big difference between my age and yours HR- so the opinions greatly vary.However, you can try to convince me... :)

ReeBz said...

You need to check this link.Its written by a western writer,and i think its more than an anecdote :)
If everyone was alloed this easily to opt out of body screening then no muslim would prefer it.It is not something based on your choices dear.This is a law specially made for Muslims out there. Muslims are the most modest.If they are allowed to opt out then only non-Muslims are left for body screening and this doeanot make sense!
Quote from the given article:
"Although passengers have the right to opt out of going through a scanner, the Transportation Security Administration recently announced that passengers who opt out of body scanners at airport security checkpoints would be required to undergo an enhanced physical pat-down that would include agents using open hands and fingers to touch and press chest and groin areas of passengers. In the past, agents were instructed to use the backs of their hands for pat-downs."

ReeBz said...

Also this:

Aishah said...

It is not a matter of oppressing minority religions, in the example you sited regarding hijab in France, they are not oppressing minorities, it is the rule for all religions even the majority Christians. They have a secular state, with freedom of religion, and freedom from it. In order to make all people equal, no religious symbols at all at allowed. If we extend that example to Pakistan, it would be like saying that the same laws apply not only to the minorities(Hindu, Sikh, Christian) but also to the majority Muslims.

I know in Pakistan it is very different, but in many western countries schooling and medical care are all provided to the people by the government so that everyone has access to education and medical care etc. They set the laws and ALL have to follow, even the Christian majority. They are not giving special treatment to the majority and oppressing the minority. Everyone is free to practice their religion in their own homes and Masjids, and in public spaces.

My husband related to me a story of our Prophet(saws), that when he was in a battle, fighting for the cause of Allah(swt), and he was fighting against a man- the enemy spit in the face of our Prophet(saws). Instead of killing him the Prophet(saws) walked away, and when the sahaba asked why he did not kill the man who spit on him, the Prophet(saws) replied that until that moment he had been fighting for Allah(swt) but after the man spit he would have been fighting because of anger.

I would really like to know what the newspaper has to say regarding the quote you posted.

Also if you can, what is the story you posted in question #2 of your original post, I would like to know more about it.

Aishah said...

Both of those links just prove the point that the naked body scanners are not required, as I said. The pat down that they give is exactly like the one used here in Karachi at the airport. A female agent will run her hands down the front/back of your body from the shoulders to the knees and each leg and both arms. If they use this procedure here in Pakistan then why is it so bad to use the same procedure in America?

ReeBz said...

Thatswhat i also meant that naked body scanners schouldnot be required.
I havenot travelled to america so i donot know what sort of a pat down it is.Anyways if I believe you,then I'm on with this pat down.But i wonder for whom US govt did so many expenses by arranging nude scanners and cavity scanners.
I donot think that even Americans would prefer it.As you can read in the same article that these scanners are saving pictures to humiliate others.

here is the link for no 2.
I have not read this full page.but yes, you can get the story in first few paragraphs.

ReeBz said...

If you say that they are secular and so its their rule to ban all religious symbols.Then i think it will be similar to say that we are Muslims and it is Islamic Republic of PAksitan,so we shall not allow any blasphemy here?This law isnot only confined to minoriteis but even Muslims are subjected the same even more cruel punishments.

7amad said...

I have never been able to understand why there has to be a "controversy" regarding the law against blasphemy. It doesn't take a rocket scientist to understand that one of the reasons why Islam has such severe punishment against blasphemy is to prevent conflict between the minorities living in Muslim countries. At the same time, Muslims are taught to respect the "gods" of other faiths, even if they don't actually exist. It instills harmony and protects all those living under the law.

Pakistan's laws are unfortunately not entirely based on Shariah, however, for us Muslims whatever part of Shariah still survives in Pakistan's laws should not be abolished. In fact, to rid our society of much of its evils we need to introduce and implement more from the Islamic jurisprudence.

I noticed a comment a few posts above comparing this matter to that of Dr. Afia's. That is an absolutely absurd comparison since both cases are worlds apart. One includes abduction, torture and withholding of a prisoner without a proper trial, where without concrete proof and the incompetency of the American intelligence agencies a person became the scapegoat of their mistakes. The other case, where certain things aren't entirely known and as claimed might be more like a personal vendetta, is a lot more transparent. Nobody asked the laws to be changed when it came to the sentencing of Dr. Afia, however, all hell breaks loose when people are unhappy with an existing law. That sounds almost hypocritical if I may say so.

If the person who had compared the two cases, read the post more clearly, they would realize that the post seems to be about the necessity of a change in the Blasphemy law, not if the law is being used for personal agendas.

I wanted to congratulate ReebZ for the though-provoking questions to those who wish for this law to be amended. You can add one more question to it which I actually find surprising; the law against Holocaust denial in many parts of Europe. A self proposed law to not "hurt" the feelings of the Jews about a major incident for which almost no proof exists?

If you'd like to add another question to the list then do so about people who committed the crime of waterboarding, which is illegal by the Common Article 3 of the Geneva Convention. Interesting to see that the hype created against laws which are there based on even common sense and for protecting humanity, and how similar hype does not survive WHEN and IF it exists against a Western Power. Double standards anyone?

If Asia Bibi is implicated for the crime, people who wish to speak out against the Blasphemy law, should show the same determination and zeal when actual laws are being twisted and bent to persecute people rather than cry about implementing already established law.

I'd like to hear these same people, who criticize and point fingers and those who are for Shariah, to shout just as loud against actual injustice and not just when it's convenient and easy to.

ReeBz said...

Liaquat Baloch said that the blasphemer Aasia Mashid had uttered blasphemous words publicly and repeatedly and also before the law court upon which she was convicted. Rejecting the view that the Blasphemy law was being used against the minorities alone, he said, more than 500 cases under this law had been registered against the Muslims and the propaganda was false.
Still think that this law is being misused?

Aishah said...

Here is a different link to a news article about Marwa al-Sherbini, as the link you posted was someones post on a forum and had no sources.

The man responsible for killing her was charged with manslaughter, so I do not understand how this shows that nothing happened to her murderer? He was arrested and prosecuted for his crime.

Also about french secular society-they do not ban religious symbols entirely, only when you are receiving free services from the government, like in a publicly funded school. If you were to attend a private school there would not be the same restrictions, so I can not see how this amounts to religious oppression.

I know this may seem strange to you but having lived in America and here in Pakistan and UAE, I have found that the place where I was given the most respect as a Muslim woman, and had all of my Religious rights available was in America, the non-Muslim country. This is how Muslim countries treat Muslims?

ReeBz said...

Now thats only opinion difference.Let me frist share news pieces with you as you desired:
The above link is from Guardian.Not an anecdote,right?

here is the second:,news-comment,news-politics,marwa-el-sherbini-egypt-headscarf-martyr-germany-burka-okaz-racism-sarkozy
not sure, but its UK based.
This one is from a newspaper-it is a column.Ask your husband to read it for you.

Also this one:
Let us talk about the link you have shared.The killer was charged with manslaughter though,Can you please find me any source where it is mentioned that he has been put to death?Any single one?Charging only doesnot matter.It was necessary to atleast charge him as he killed a lady by stabbing 18 times infront EVERYONE.
Do you think charging only is enough?Plus he didnot kill only one but TWO as the lady was pregnant!!

I donot feel like believing on your second thing.Do you mind telling what sort of religious rights you are not allowed to follow here in Paksitan?We all know how they treat Muslims in US,specially after 9/11.Copies of Quraan are burned just to show racial violence against Muslims by ther religious personailities.
Quoting from USA today:

"Thirty-nine percent of respondents to the USA TODAY/Gallup Poll said they felt at least some prejudice against Muslims. The same percentage favored requiring Muslims, including U.S. citizens, to carry a special ID "as a means of preventing terrorist attacks in the United States." About one-third said U.S. Muslims were sympathetic to al-Qaeda, and 22% said they wouldn't want Muslims as neighbors."

"Muslim women who wear head scarves are more likely than those who don't to say they face discrimination and a hostile environment, according to a study to be presented at the psychological association's meeting by Alyssa Rippy of the University of Tulsa. The scarves make Muslim women stand out and could change behavior toward them, she suggests."

"A few years ago, in a Wal-Mart parking lot, Asad says two men approached her and aggressively shouted "Y'all ought to be (expletive) locked up!" Pregnant at the time, she quickly backed away and then realized there were parked cars behind her. "I felt trapped and very vulnerable. I'm pregnant. I didn't know if they were going to get violent." Luckily, she says, they just walked away."

will conclude it with a quote from same link:
Amer believes the world has changed for U.S. Muslims since Sept. 11 but says: "I don't think Americans understand what's happened. Muslims have the same anxieties and anguish about terrorism as everyone else in the U.S. At the same time, they're being blamed for it. They're carrying a double burden."

so what sort of religious freedon and respect in US you are talking about Aishah?Looking forward to know more about it.If you are right,then I'm really glad to know it!

ReeBz said...

Not only at public schools but everywhere else you will feel the discriminatiin in France:
Anyhow,let suppose that as france is a secular county they donot want exhibition of any religious symnol.Be it of christianity or Islam etc.
I think int he other way ,a bit indeirectly you mean that As paksitan is a muslim county all others should follow Islamic rules?I mean PAksitan is a muslim state,so we will not want anything conflicting our religious teachings.It will not be similar to oppressing minorties then,right?
Its so simple:When you are in a state like France you must follwo their rules,and when you are inan islamic state you must follow our rules!

ReeBz said...

Thanks for youe detailed comment which i find very intellectual.
Both of the questions you suggested are very interesting but pardon my lack of knowledge i dont know anyhting about these though the holocause thing seems a bit familiar.I would like to converse with you in personal,if you can give me a bit of its background.

About Afia thing, well you are right about that comment.I felt same.I assume by her actions that she doesnot want to discuss anything which she has said.Some people jsut love criticising only.

filpaki said...

Hot burning discussion.. inviting lots of personal clashes and quarrels.
I would like to ask Aisha that why have you stretched out a side issue,but you havenot discussed even a bit the real issue of this post?

Anonymous said...

@ReebZ: That was an amazing read, MashaALLAH. I liked the way you stressed more on the other religious scriptures.
I certainly believe in discussing and challenging the norms, but a try to dismantle the very fundamentals of Islam and projecting the Islam as a defensive religion is totally idiotic.

I have met people who are supporting the Asiya Bibi just to be labelled as "Liberals".
Sometimes you don't have to convince people, just let them privy to the real info, so that they can weigh their arguments their selves.

Thumbs up! Good Work.

Aishah said...


Here is a link-

And another-,1518,660730,00.html

There are more but they are in German.

The murderer was arrested, charged, and convicted. Not only for murdering Marwa El-Sherbini but also for the attempted murder of her husband. He was sentenced to the maximum penalty under the law. So I will ask you again, how is it that you can say that nothing happened to the murderer?

Aishah said...

I did not say it was only in schools, I just used that as an example. Also the article you linked only supports my position, no one is forcing her to remove her hijab, she is running for a position while wearing it. The uproar is caused by other peoples bigotry, not because she is not allowed to run for office.

Aishah said...

I have not been responding to the main point of the post because I do not think that it is a well thought out premise. There is a lot of cut and paste, without proper citation of sources. It does not really make a lot of sense to compare the religious oppression of minorities using blasphemy laws to incidences in other countries that can be proven not to have been religious oppression(like body scanners-other options are available they are not required).

InshAllah I will try to post my thoughts on blasphemy in Islam later if you are interested, as I am sure that they differ from sister Reebz's opinions.

Aishah said...

Regarding your links about the treatment of Muslims in America- I never said that there was not discrimination from non-Muslims, only that I and my religious rights are given more respect in America. As a Muslim woman I have the right to attend a masjid as we are told-"Ibn 'Umar reported: 'The Messenger of Allah (may peace be upon him) said: Do not prevent the maid-servants of Allah(swt) from going to the mosque."(Sahih Muslim,886) and also
Umm ‘Atiyyah (may Allaah be pleased with her) said: The Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) commanded us to bring them (women) out on (Eid) al-Fitr and (Eid) al-Adha, and to bring out adolescent girls, menstruating women and virgins, but the menstruating women were to stay away from the prayer, but were to witness goodness and the gathering of the Muslims. I said: “O Messenger of Allaah, what if one of us does not have a jilbaab?” He said: “Let her sister lend her a jilbab.”(Sahih Bukhari, 324 and Sahih Muslim, 890), but here in Karachi there is no place for me. For two Eids I have prayed alone in my home, and my son could also not go as he is too young to go with his father alone.

In America I went regularly to the masjid for a woman's halaka/tafseer class, for Salat-ul Jumah with my husband, and for beginners Arabic classes. I met other Muslim women, and learned more of my faith. No on prevented me from going there.

Please tell me where in Karachi is there a masjid with space for women? How often do you attend Salat-ul Jumah in the masjid?

"Say to the believing men that they should lower their gaze and guard their modesty: that will make for greater purity for them: and Allah is well acquainted with all that they do."(surah 24 ayat 30)

In America men did not stare at Muslim women as they do here. Allah(swt) tells the men not to stare at the women, but to lower their gaze. How often does that happen here. Can you ride a bus here without getting leered at or cat-called?

Please forgive me if I seem rather upset on this particular topic as it is very distressing to me that I and many other women are denied our god-given rights, because of a corrupt society that cannot separate its Hindu based patriarchal culture from its religion.

ReeBz said...

Aishah:Strange to knwo that Muslim women are not stared at by non-Muslims.Anyway i will not go in further debate here.

I never found anyone staring at me.No one will stare you untill you are covered properly.Your body is covered icluding your bosoms,head till toe.Even face,if necessary.

Its your bad luck that you havenot found any such mosque where muslim women can offer prayers.I myself have offered congregational prayers with other Muslims in mosque.And please dun make a fuss of it as Muslim women were asked by prophet of Allah to say their prayers at home individually.However He asked to not to forbide any women if she wants her pareyr in mosque.

It was narrated from ‘Abd-Allaah ibn Mas’ood that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “A woman’s prayer in her room is better than her prayer in her courtyard, and her prayer in her cabinet is better than her prayer in her room.”

(Narrated by Abu Dawood, 570; al-Tirmidhi, 1173.

It was narrated that Umm Humayd the wife of Abu Humayd al-Saa’idi came to the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) and said, “O Messenger of Allaah, I like to pray with you.” He said, “I know that you like to pray with me, but your prayer in your room is better for you than your prayer in your courtyard and your prayer in your courtyard is better for you than your praying in your house, and your prayer in your house is better for you than your prayer in the mosque of your people, and your prayer in the mosque of your people is better for you than your prayer in my mosque.” So she issued orders that a prayer-place be prepared for her in the furthest and darkest part of her house, and she used to pray there until she met Allaah (i.e., died).”

(Narrated by Ahmad, 26550).
There are arabic sessions and sermons from Quran classes too.In karachi this culture is alot common.In my area there are many such sessions at many homes.Jamate Islami sessions and tanzeeme islami sessions for both males and females are common. Its just this that you may havenot tried to find out any here.

Muhammad Hamza said...

Its terrible to see Muslims arguing...
Still..I would like to put my part in the argument as well.
I stand with HR on the ReeBz

Quoting Molana Ibtasam Ilahi Zaheer:"In quran para 19, first rakoo a whole incident has been mentioned where Holy Prophet himself killed a person who would make fun of his face.Naouzubillah."

You should/MUST have double checked this,as it's a serious thing saying that something is in the Holy Quran..!
And I have also have read the tafseer by molana Taqi usmani sahib and never found any ayaat let alone a entire rakoo.

@HR,I would but STRONGLY disagree with u upon the issue of Maluna Aasia.
You apperently of her been a women,seem to pity her.
But she has already accepted her crime in front of a court and it's on record.
Otherwise do you think our court has gone nuts that it called the lady a death sentence.
and would it be so easy to take revenge on someone by making false accusations then there would have been thousands of executions through this law instead of none till now..!!
That lady is sinful and you should not pity her in any way.

Aishah said...

You would not believe how hard I have tried to find a Masjid and been rejected. Please give me the name of one masjid that you know for a fact has a prayer space for women.

Regarding your assertion that you have never been stared at, there is no way I can believe you in this. When I go out I wear a full plain abaya, hijab, and often a niqab, so do my nund and there has never been one time where someone was not staring. You must live in a very isolated place that you have not experienced this.

Will you be publishing my other comments? or should I refrain from further comment?

Aishah said...

Here is an article regarding the "eve-teasing", harassment of women, and you have never experienced this? This doesn't happen here?\06\09\story_9-6-2008_pg7_22

ReeBz said...

there are many such mosques,pardon me i donot rememeber the names of all as for us it is a very very Common thing.We don care about names.However few i remember are here:
Thanwi mosque jacobline
Abu bakar mosque Malir
Madni masjid tariq road
Rahmania mosque malir

I m sure there may bemany more.But i know about these in which I myslef have offered prayers or my friends.

I donot live in an isolated area, may be people who ,live in your area are frustrated and so they find it the only way to take out their frustration.I m a student and all my life i have been to several educational institutes.I have almost travelled to half of the city but i seriously didnot feel any such behaviour from the opposite sex except just once or twice.Bad people are everywhere.

Have some patience, m gonna publish all your comments.As i m replying every comment individually it may take some time.

Aishah said...

Dear Reebz,
Please do not feel that you have to reply to all of my comments, I do not wish for you to go to too much trouble.

ReeBz said...

@ hamza:
Thanks for comemnting.Yes i'm working on it.I want to know the POV of scholar Ebtisam who said those words.I didnot doubt him as he is secretary general of jamat ahle hadis.If he has used wrong reference then he is responsible.I shall however will post a sorry version at the end of this post so that everyone who reads this post read that sorry thingy too.

ReeBz said...

cut and paste is necessary.I mentioned all the sources.Except one others are from an encyclopedia.Do you have any reason to challenge that reference?

It DOES make sense as blasphemy laws are here subjected to criticism by pointing out them as religious minorties oppression.

ReeBz said...

As for your eve teasing incident source, i will again say that if a girl goes out in unethical dress then she will fcae the same challenge.If you yourself are good then no one will dare to tease you.I myself have seen a boy elbowing a girl. but let me describe that girl to you.She was wearing tight fitted jeans wit short shirt which showed her lower back.Plus she was walking in such a style that everyones focus was on her that area.
When he elbowed her, she didnot show any response.It means she herself invited them?It happened in Aladin mall.
On the other hand, even such guys make space for me.Cause i never go out in an objectionabale dressing.

Aishah said...

Large blocks of text that are simple cut and pasted into the post make it difficult to read and normally when writing a person would put such things into their own words followed by a source citation.

In your original post you compared the use of blasphemy laws as a tool of religious oppression to four things-
1.banning of minarets of Marwa el-Sherbini
3.banning of religious symbols in france
4. Nude body scanners in the US

As I explained above-
1.Minaret bans are not oppression, but discrimination based on bigotry, and so are very different than oppression using blasphemy
2.The case of Marwa el-Sherbini was a case of a single person murdering someone for their own racist views, and not the systematic oppression of an entire group of people.
3.Again, it is the same as point 1, discrimination based on bigotry. While still wrong, it is not oppression.
4.As explained in my previous posts the body scanners are not required, and there are procedures in place to accommodate individuals modesty.
web definitions for -
Oppression-the act of subjugating by cruelty
Discrimination-unfair treatment of a person or group on the basis of prejudice

While both are wrong, killing people who may not have actually been blasphemers is worse than simply treating them unfairly based on personal prejudices.

Aishah said...

Your anecdote vs mine, I have seen here in the market young men following and bothering young ladies who were wearing abaya, hijab and niqab. The young ladies did not respond at all and the boys only left them when a salesmen shouted at them. It happens a lot, whether you have seen it or not.

Eve-teasing is not the fault of the girls even if they wear bad clothing, as boys are told to lower their gaze. If a girl wears revealing clothing that is her sin, but the looking is the sin of the boy for not obeying Allah(swt) and lowering his gaze.

ReeBz said...

everyone has his or her own writing styles.Whether you say it in your own words or copy paste it.It shall portray the same thing.However,its a common practice GLOBALLY when you quote something from any mentioned reference you donot convert it into your own wordings.

About all the four things,I'll say only one thing that you perceive things differently, and i take them differently.It may be cause of our cultural backgrounds.You have been raised in a NON-MUSLIM country and I'm a muslim by birth raised up in a muslim country.You didnot try to expose what are your views aboyt blasphemy law,which was my major concern.

I think we should end the discussion here, as it is leading nowhere.

ReeBz said...

Eve-teasing is not the fault of the girls even if they wear bad clothing, as boys are told to lower their gaze. If a girl wears revealing clothing that is her sin, but the looking is the sin of the boy for not obeying Allah(swt) and lowering his gaze.

I have said it earlier that good and bad people are everywhere.YOu have advantage in this discussion that you have experienced both US and PAksitan.I have heard alot about muslim discrimination in US but as i havenot experienced myelf, you are lesslikely to believe and i m in a weaker position to comment.
HOwever i donot believe that it doesnot happen in America.Its your natural love for your motherland which is speaking here.
You have self made reasons for everyhting.LIke scanners are not required.If they are not required then why they are being used atill?Does it make sense that you are allowed to opt out but still those scanners exist?I think if you are allowed this easily to step out then no one would like to pass through it.simple

ReeBz said...

Thanks for taking out your time and commenting here.
I now believe that these issues are very sensitive and people are always found stuck to their beliefs whether wrong or right.If you try to research people condemn you by saying extra amount of "copy and paste".If you try to reconfirm something people tag you as a baseless person.

As far as asiya cursed,dunno why people are showing so much love for her.It is proved that no one tried to tap her by misusing the law.she muttered derogatory comments many times infront public and even in court.She needs SEVERE punishment and thsoe who are talking about sympathy for her,needs to read kalima again!

Aishah said...

Reebz yaar, you are not listening to what I am saying. I never said that these type of things never happen in America, just that most of the time I and my religious right get more respect there than they do here.

And about the body scanners- most Americans do not have a problem, as the person who will view the image is in another room and will never see you. If you choose to refuse to use the scanner then you just have to get checked by a female officer. The scanners are used to find weapons that people may try to carry onto an airplane. Which is what the security officer who is checking you is for, it is exactly like going to the airport here(have you been to JIA recently?) The scanner just saves time. If airport security had to do a person to person search of each individual it would take a lot of time, the scanner takes only 15-30 seconds.

I am happy to have been raised in America, too much of Pakistani culture is mixed up with Hindu culture and so I do not have to worry about what I have learned from my ancestors, I started fresh and can follow a pure Islam. InshAllah, we will all one day have the same.

ReeBz said...

I have understood all ayesha-you dun worry :)
MAy be you have better understanding about US and scanners as you have experienced.
So no more comments from myside.It cant make sense to me,pardon meh for my lack of unerstanding I might have shown you here.

Secondly,Paksitani culture isnot mixed with hind culture.It is just excessive bombardment of media.(and it is destroying our socierty,I have already expressed my growing fears regarding media at this blog)Its up to you what you choose.I donot follow anyhting which has silimarty with hinduism.Its to tally upto you.

At teh end,
Thanks for the healthy discussin.I do think we are still standing at the same points from where we started, but it helped each of us in knowing eachother.

Aishah said...

"Thanks for the healthy discussin.I do think we are still standing at the same points from where we started, but it helped each of us in knowing each other."

Agreed! :-) I think though that our positions on some issues are closer than we realize.

Connie L. Nash said...

What a lovely way to end this vital and long discussion. I'm again SURE you are quite the catalyst for challenging dialogue, ReeBz/

Would you mind sending me your address on my newer email as the system doesn't have & I would love to send you some things by slow postal mail.

Keep up your research and although you may want to skip them or just file - possible there's something of interest for LATER at one of these:

But if you don't have time or's A-OK.

ReeBz said...

Thank you so much :)
I will send you my Id soon but I m these days busy in my final exams.Plus these postings have already took alot of my time.If you come here again then here is my ID

You must check my latest post!You will get to know about everythign

Connie L. Nash said...

Thanx, ReeBz,

I am making a small comment under Thinking's latest which you may want to see. May your final exams go well :)

Eyewitness said...

Assalamu alaikum wa rahmatullah,

Sister, May Allah help you to do more research and may Allah increase your love of the holy Prophet sall-Allahu alaihe wa sallam.

I agree with your point of view regarding the Blasmphy act in Pakistan.

What I have learnt so far is that the purpose of starting propaganda against the act is the part of Americanisation.

Forces behind this propaganda wish to enforse the American definition of freedom of speech on the whole world.
But they should know that, the type of freedom of speech being practised in these so called "civilized nations" is considered madness in the rest of the world.

As the poet of the East Allama Iqbal had righty said,
"ho fikr agar haam tau azaad-e-izhaar,

insaan kau haiwan banany ka tareeqa."

We praise Allah (s.w.t) the Creator of the worlds, Who revealed the following verses in His last book, the holy Quran:

" And do not abuse those whom they call upon besides Allah, lest exceeding the limits they should abuse Allah out of ignorance. Thus have We made fair seeming to every people their deeds; then to their Lord shall be their return, so He will inform them of what they did."
(Surah 6, Verse 108)
So, We believe in others right of being free to choose and practise their religion but blasphemy can never be considered a right, neither of a minority nor of a majority.


I can understand how difficult and time consuming the job of writing such posts and replying to these comments really is, so I pray that may Allah accept it from you , ameen.

I can not keep myself from telling you an emotional incident connected to this very post of yours:

As I have already shared on my photo blog that it has been my dream to work in one of the two sacred cities of Muslims.
Finally on the 10th of Muharam 1432 A.H (15/12/2010) my dream became a reality and our company shifted us to Makkah-tul-Mukarmah.
When I reached Masjid-ul-Haraam, I started to make duas for myself and for my closer family members and for those who had desired me to do so for them.

Just at the time of my departure from the holy Mosque I tried to recall all the closer ones once again,

Sister, Perhaps it will be hard for you to believe that at the very last moment of my departure, suddenly I thought of this post of yours and the struggle which you might have done to share it with your readers. I made a special prayer for you which I had not done for anyone else, not even for my real sisters.
Sister, Believe me I did not just raised my hands , but I made this dua for you after offering two nawafils and I did this all while I was standing in Masjid-ul-Haraam and the holy Kabah was just a few meters away from me.

Rabbana taqabal minna Innaka Antas-Samee-ul-Aleem

Ibn Hanif

Makkah, Saudi Arabia

Rehan Qayoom said...

The verse you quote from Sura al-Maidah concerns those who wage war against Allah and His Apostle. It is not about blasphemers. Where did you get this interpretation from? You might find the following links helpful:

Blasphemy & Apostacy

When the Kalima is erased from the mosques in Pakistan, who is it committing blasphemy?

Kya ub bhi avam vahan jab bigrren bhag azanen detey hen
Saylab thaperrey marey to sab jaag azanen detey hen
Kya ub bhi safed minaron sey nafrat kei bulavey atey hen
Dharti kei nasib ujarrtey hen jub naag azanen detey hen
Bulbul ko des nikala hey or zagh o zaghn sey hen yaraney
Hur samt chaman ki mundderon pur kaag azanen detey hen

Ibn Hanif said...

Rehan Qayoom,

Kalmah is never removed from Mosques.

But Pakistani constitution does not allow this Kalmah to be written on Qadiyani Worship places.

On one hand you provide advocacy to the blasphemers and the enemies of the Prophet Muhammad (sallAllahu Alaihe Wa Sallam) and on other hand you wish to write this Kalmah on your worship places , don't you see any contradiction in your actions and desires.

The poem you shared itself denies the message it pretends to convey.
Shayer ek taraf tau nafrat ko mitana chahta hai :
"Kia ab bhi sfade minaron se nafraton ke bulavey atay hain"

Laikin dusri taraf wo azane dainay walon ko naag ke raha hai:

"Dharti ke naseeb ujhadte hain jab naag azane daitay hain"

Reebz, I think this current propaganda is the continuity of Pervaiz Musharaf's u-turn policy his appointed puppet governor was trying his best to help Americanization in our country.

Current western propaganda reminds me the following poem of Dr. Muhammad Iqbal:
["Iblees Ka Paigham Apne Siasi Farzandon Ke Naam"]

wo faqa kash kay mout say derta nahin zara
Rooh-e-Muhammad (PBUH) uss kay badan say nikal dou

Fikr-e-Arab ko dey key farangi takhayyulaat
Islam ko Hijaz-o-Yaman say nikaal dou

Afghanion ki ghairat-e-deen ka hai ye ILaaj
Mullah ko un kay koh-o-daman say nikaal dou

Ahl-e-Haram say un ki riwayaat cheen lo
Aahu ko murghzar-e-hatan say nikaal dou

Iqbal kay nafs say hai laaley ki aag tez Aisey ghazal sira ko chamman say nikaal dou

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