ISSN 2330-717X

Pakistan: Claims Police ‘Torture’ Boy And Mother Accused Of Burning Quran

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A young boy and his mother said they were tortured while detained by police over blasphemy allegations in the Pakistani city of Quetta, said a Christian rights group.

Nine-year old Christian boy Inzam was accused of burning a copy of the Quran, which saw him being arrested and detained along with his mother, Shakil on Oct. 21, says the London-based charity British Pakistani Christians Association.

“The arrests were made without investigation on the testimony of a Muslim witness and was totally in accordance with the draconian blasphemy laws of Pakistan,” said a report on the charity’s website.

“A Muslim witness is given higher authority than non-Muslim testimonies under Shariah law; these are Islamic laws that determine Pakistani law,” the report said.

After four days of lobbying from rights groups and politicians the young boy and her mother were released Oct. 25.

“The mother and child have expressed in no uncertain terms that they had been interrogated and suffered torture during their four day detainment,” said the report. “However despite their treatment they both did not confess to the crime of blasphemy.”

Police said they found no evidence that a copy of the Quran had been burnt, said the report.

Blasphemy against the Quran is punishable with life imprisonment in Pakistan. Church leaders have long charged that the laws are abused for personal gain and that religious extremists are furthering their agenda by abusing blasphemy laws.

UCA News

The Union of Catholic Asian News (UCA News, UCAN) is the leading independent Catholic news source in Asia. A network of journalists and editors that spans East, South and Southeast Asia, UCA News has for four decades aimed to provide the most accurate and up-to-date news, feature, commentary and analysis, and multimedia content on social, political and religious developments that relate or are of interest to the Catholic Church in Asia.

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