Lest we forget…. other minors in Pakistan accused of ‘blasphemy’

1993 – May 11: Salamat Masih, a 14-year-old Christian boy, was named as the main accused in a case lodged by the imam of the mosque at Ratta Dhotran, district Gujranwala, Punjab, Pakistan. It was alleged that Salamat had written derogatory remarks about the Prophet Muhammad (SW) on the mosque walls and  thrown slips of paper with similar language written on them into the mosque. Salamat’s father Rehmat Masih and uncle Manzoor Masih were co-accused. Manzoor Masih and Salamat Masih were illiterate. A sessions court sentenced them to death but the high court later acquitted them. Manzoor Masih was shot dead during the hearings, and the High Court Judge, Arif Iqbal Bhatti, who acquitted them, was also later shot dead. Salamat Masih and Rehmat Masih had to flee the country.

For a list of more cases see Incidents of minors in Pakistan accused of ‘blasphemy’ at the Citizens for Democracy blog

Demo in Karachi, Aug 25, 3.30 pm, in support of ‘blasphemy’ accused Rimsha Masih

 

Demonstration in Karachi in support of Rimsha Masih, the girl (aged between 11 and 16 years who is reported to have Downs Syndrome) who has been accused of blasphemy in a blatant misuse of religion as a political tool, at Press Club TOMORROW, August 25, at 3.30 pm. This peaceful protest has been organised by All Pakistan Christian League, Action Committee for Human Rights, Peace and Development Organization, The Saviour’s Trust, Minority Rights Forum and Mass International, supported by various human rights organisations. Do join with friends if you are in town. Cross-posted from the blog Citizens for Democracy, Pakistan.

NOTE: I’ve removed the visual originally used with this post after learning that the photo that was used is fake and misleading on several counts.

Signature campaign and public performance against violence in the name of religion

Signature campaign against violence in the name of religion


CFD volunteers receive an encouraging response as they engage with members of the public.

On April 14, 2012 Citizens for Democracy organized a signature campaign against killings and other violence in the name of religion, as well a public theatre performance. Read more at the CFD blog… Signature campaign and public performance against violence in the name of religion.

Jashne Faiz – CFD Resolution

Karachi, you were wonderful tonight. Photo: Sabeen Mahmud

April 17: Karachi, you were wonderful tonight. Great event, attended by about 30,000 people. See the text of the resolution (long version as well as short version read out in the plenary) at the Citzens for Democracy blog.

Congratulations to the CFD team for making this happen. This is our Pakistan.

Jashne-Faiz April 17, 2011, Karachi: event details

Check out the Citizens for Democracy blog for details about a great all-day event

Sunday, April 17, 2011, 11.30 am-12.30 midnight

Jashne Faiz, CDGK Sports Complex, Karachi

Seminars, theatre, music, art, speakers’ corner, food court, children’s play area, plus plenary session with music concert (inclusing Strings, Laal, Shehzad Roy, Arieb Azhar and others) and resolutions; culminating in mushaira

Don’t forget to pre-register at the CFD website – www.cfdpk.org

The real Pakistan: report on CFD’s inspiring signature campaign

CFD volunteers engaged with the public and got a great response. Photo: Shuja Qureshi

Posted to the Citizens for Democracy blog:

“Without exaggeration, the exercise was a phenomenal success. Not only because a total of 15,000 signatures were collected… but also because it showed that ordinary people… overwhelmingly agreed with the cause…”

The real Pakistan | By Farieha Aziz Continue reading

Reference for Shahbaz Bhatti, Mar 20, 5.00 pm, Karachi


Citizens for Democracy

Reference for Mr. Shahbaz Bhatti
Date: 20th March, 2011
Time: 5:00 PM
Venue: Karachi Press Club

Shahbaz Bhatti was a man who ascribed to the vision of Jinnah, and was a strong believer of pluralism, freedom of religion and rule of law. With a few other citizens and government leaders, he founded the All Pakistan Minorities Alliance (APMA), and was unanimously elected to lead this nationwide coalition of minority representatives and NGOs. Continue reading

Phenomenal response to the CFD mass letter campaign

KARACHI, March 12: Thousands of people from all walks of life joined hands with Citizens for Democracy (CFD), by participating and signing letters in the interfaith harmony drive “Silence Means More Blood” launched by CFD on Saturday, March 12, 2011. Karachiites signed some 15,000 letters that will be sent to the President, Prime Minister, Chief Justice and all the Chief Ministers.

CFD activists explain the letter to Karachi citizens. Photos: K.B. Abro

A view of CFD's day-long stall in Karachi. Photo: K.B. Abro

“The response was phenomenal,” says CFD activist and journalist Farieha Aziz. “All four of our letter boxes were full even before the end of the day. We were able to engage with our fellow citizens from all walks of life – from professionals from different fields to labourers, rikshaw drivers and rehri walas. Everyone was asked to read the letter or it was read out to them, or they were told the gist of it before they signed. The energy and commitment of CFD members was amazing. They were out on the road stopping cars, talking to passers by, even in buses when they stopped, drawing people to the camp.”

 

Sabeen Mahmud writes that her mother and the writer Attiya Dawood went to the mandir nearby. “Very politically engaged group. Brought back 20 sigs.” Also see this moving video Sabeen made of the event, set to Habib Jalib’s poetry.

The campaign is ongoing. More details, and photos, at the CFD blog

Mass letter signing campaign TODAY, Sat. March 12, 2011, 11am-7pm

Say No to Violence & to a Denial of our Civil Rights

Join CFD’s mass letter-writing campaign, for which people are gathering to add their signatures on letters addressed to the President of Pakistan, Prime Minister, Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Pakistan and the Chief Ministers of all four provinces. “We are demanding from those in positions of power to take appropriate actions to reverse the erosion of our civil and human rights and to uphold the rule of law without fear or favour. Please join us in a mass letter campaign – we are your peaceful fellow citizens, struggling to survive with dignity, and yet trying to preserve our inalienable democratic rights. The purpose of this campaign is to allow all citizens to speak out in support of inter-faith harmony and to resist a growing climate of religious intolerance in Pakistan,” says a press release.

Support Citizens for Democracy, 11 am to 7pm  TODAY (Saturday, March 12, 2011) at Jahangir Kothari Parade (opposite Park Towers), Clifton, Karachi. Bring postage stamps and friends


Protest: Shahbaz Bhatti murder, vigilante action, incitements to violence

Open letter to The President, Prime Minister, Interior Minister, Chief Justice, and heads of all political parties, Pakistan

Protest & demand for action regarding Shahbaz Bhatti murder, vigilantism, and incitements to violence in Pakistan – signature campaign initiated by Citizens for Democracy. Deadline for endorsements: Monday March 7, midnight Pakistan time, after which signatures will be compiled and sent to the recipients and to media. Endorsements can be made at the CFD blog, or via email to cfd.pak@gmail.com. Please share with friends. If anyone wants to translate it and circulate, please feel free. Thanks.
Blog: citizensfordemocracy.wordpress.com | Twitter @cfdpk | Text also posted below Continue reading

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