Never miss a story

Get subscribed to our newsletter


×
Supporters of Pakistani civil society groups protest in favor of the Christian community in Karachi, Pakistan, Feb. 26, 2018. An official said Sajid Masih, a Christian blasphemy suspect, who suffered serious injuries after jumping off a federal building, is now in stable condition. VOA

Authorities in Pakistan are investigating reports that a Christian blasphemy suspect jumped from a four-story building and suffered serious injuries to escape torture in custody.

Officials and doctors say Sajid Masih is recovering from his “fractured legs and jaw” in a hospital in Lahore where the incident took place on Friday.


Masih and one of his cousins were taken into custody for allegedly posting anti-Islam content on Facebook. They were being probed by cybercrime experts of the Federal Investigation Agency, or FIA, at its main office in the eastern Pakistani city when Masih jumped from the fourth floor of the building.

FIA officials denied charges the man was being tortured or abused, saying “no one had even touched” him. They insisted Masih panicked after “he was asked to unlock his cell phone” for screening.

ALSO READ: 69 Years a Slave? Balochistan’s Struggle for Freedom: A Detailed Report


In a video message circulated and shared via social media, Masih has accused several FIA officers of “severely” torturing him and snatching his cell phone in the process. Pixabay

He alleged the officers were coercing him and his cousin into sexually assaulting one another before he decided to jump from the window.

Dozens of Pakistani human rights groups and activists strongly condemned the incident in a joint statement Monday. They raised serious concerns over persistent misuse of Pakistan’s harsh blasphemy laws, specifically against Christian and other religious minorities.

“The law enforcement authorities have not only failed in their duty to protect minorities but have actively participated in violence against them,” the statement said.


The groups called for an independent inquiry into the incident, rejecting the FIA’s ongoing internal probe as unacceptable. Wikimedia Commons

They also demanded that area police withdraw the case of attempted suicide against Masih. Activists say they suspect the police case was meant to cover up and protect FIA officers who made the Christian community member jump off the building.

Insulting Islam and its Prophet Mohammad are extremely sensitive issues in Pakistan and can carry the death penalty, although no one has been executed under the blasphemy laws. Right groups say the laws are often misused or exploited to settle personal disputes.

ALSO READ: Pakistan’s handling of Balochistan is reminiscent of its step brotherly treatment to East Pakistan


Mere allegations of blasphemy have provoked mob lynchings of suspects or their targeted killings in Pakistan. Pixabay

In Monday’s joint statement, activists have also demanded authorities take immediate steps for safety and protection of Masih and his relatives.

Last year,23-year-old university student Mashal Khan was beaten to death by fellow students and others at the campus, accusing him of sharing blasphemous content on social media, charges investigations later determined were false. The incident happened in the northwestern city of Mardan, provoking a nationwide outcry against Khan’s brutal killing.

Earlier in February, an anti-terrorism court sentenced one person to death and 30 others to jail terms, including life imprisonment, for their role in the lynching case. (VOA)


Popular

Wikipedia

"So my decision to say yes to the film came from the director's vision."

Bollywood actor Arjun Kapoor was never really keen on exploring horror comedy but the story of 'Bhoot Police' pushed him to try his hand at the genre. The actor said, "It's not a genre that I was looking for, script-wise. When I heard it, when I read it, what worked for me was the camaraderie between the brothers, the friction and the banter between them. So I quite liked the friction, the brotherhood and at the same time the love-hate relationship and the witty tone."


Keep Reading Show less
Unsplash

Consumers nowadays seek out wearables that will provide them with the feeling of a high-performance athlete.

Are you still doing things the incorrect way when it comes to working out? Whether you realise it or not, the correct sports bra or leggings can help you achieve your fitness objectives faster or perhaps exceed them. This is something that a high-performance athlete sincerely believes in. Because it's critical to choose clothing that suits your needs in order to achieve the desired result.

This is the era of flexible work schedules and rapid acceptance of a healthy way of living. Everyone is becoming more aware of the importance of keeping good mental and physical fitness, and the sportswear business is now helping to make their lives easier. When you feel good about yourself while working out, it motivates you to go above and beyond. Fitness aficionados today not only exercise at home, but also go to the gym or participate in sports on a regular basis. Comfortable, performance-oriented clothing underpinned by the latest advancements has become a need.

Keep Reading Show less
Unsplash

In demanding office work like graphic designing or editing and developing, gaming laptops are a fantastic choice,

A laptop has evolved from being a luxury item to becoming an essential utility in today's world. Laptops make it easier for professionals to work on the go as more and more of our work shifts online. Whether you're attending a conference or travelling to another location, a laptop allows you to bring your work with you.

Advantages of Gaming laptops:

Keep reading... Show less