A 16-year-old Pakistani Christian has been arrested for Blasphemy for liking a Facebook post. The teenager who is from Punjab has been jailed pending trial.
On 18th September, 16-year-old Nabeel Chohan from Chak 66, Bhai Pheru, District of Kasur was arrested and charged under Pakistan’s infamous Blasphemy law. He was arrested by the Police after locals filed a complaint against Masih under Section 295/ 295A of Pakistan’s penal code. The complainant alleged that he was going through Masih’s Facebook account when he saw that he had liked a picture of Holy Kaaba, one of Islam’s Holiest sites.
He further stated that “After seeing the picture of the Kabba we were offended, he (Masih) has hurt religious sentiment of all the Muslims and we demand that action is taken against him”
Muhammad Hussain, the investigating police officer, confirmed the arrest and told media that Chohan was in a police cell.
Since the allegations Masih’s family has gone into hiding fearing a backlash from local Islamists. In many cases, particularly those involving the poor, false allegations are made to settle personal scores. In 2010 a Christian woman Asia Bibi was sentenced to death for drinking water meant for her Muslim colleagues. In 2014, an Ahmadi woman and two children were killed in riots over an allegedly blasphemous Facebook post in the city of Gujranwala. As of now Pakistan has 19 convicts on death row for Blasphemy.