Will decision on Asia Bibi help bail out Pakistan from financial mess?
New Delhi, Nov 1: The Supreme Court of Pakistan has acquitted Christian woman Asia Bibi, who was sentenced to death for blasphemy charges nearly eight years ago. Her release has sparked protests in many parts of Pakistan with death threats issued to her from many religious extremist organisations. But the real question is what prompted her release from the charges that had already claimed a couple of lives in the country.
An expert on the issue of Pakistan Sushant Sareen tweeted: "This is how the paks play the international public opinion. This acquittal is not an outcome of justice but of bankruptcy. It is political judgment aimed at inspiring confidence in international community and getting money and concession in return. They have made a mamoo [fool] of everyone."
Pakistan has been fooling the international community by such decision and getting away with not only its involvement in terrorist activities but also dismal human right records among minorities and in Baluchistan region.
Sources said that Pakistan is facing a severe financial crunch and this could be one the reasons for such a decision as not only the government but military and judiciary too need money to function and finances of the country are in tatters. The government needed $12 billion to bailout its sinking economy. It has got some assistance from Saudai Arabia but that is not enough. Now Pakistan has to seek some Assistance from International Monetary Fund (IMF) to get some assistance but the IMF has always been taking about some conditions.
It is said that human right activists and many western nations have been questioning Pakistan's poor credentials on this but Pakistan was not paying any heed to them. But when things have become unbearable for Pakistan on economic front, it seems the decision was taken to get some help from western countries. It seems impossible for anyone coming out of gallows in Pakistan on charges of blasphemy. But the decision has been taken and she is released.
Now amid threats from extremists, the way Nobel laureate Malala Yusufzai had been sent out of Pakistan to save her and her family from terrorist threat, Asia and her family would also be flown out of Pakistan to some Western country to ensure their safety. Actually a three-judge bench led by Chief Justice Saqib Nisar amid great tension and tight security read out the judgment by citing the Quran in his ruling. He ruled: "The judgment of the Lahore High Court and that of the trial court is reversed," adding that Asia should be set free from a jail in Sheikhupura, near Lahore, if she wasn't wanted in any other case. "Her conviction is set aside and she is to be relieved forthwith if not required in other charges," the judgment said.
But activists of different religious parties came out on the streets, vandalised cars and blocked roads. Protest and violence erupted. The head of Tehreek-e-Labbaik Pakistan (TLP), Khadim Hussain Rizvi, started a sit-in opposite the Punjab provincial assembly in Lahore with hundreds of supporters. Jamaat-u-Dawah chief Hafiz Saeed called for protests after Jumma prayers.