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HRCP appeals for release of minor Christian girl

Lahore: Rimsha, an 11-year old Christian girl was, arrested from Mehraabad, on the outskirts of Islamabad on the charge of blasphemy on August 16 and sent to Adyala jail in Rawalpindi on a 14-day remand.

She is accused of burning pages of Holy Quran. According to some reports she was carrying a shopping bag to dispose of used pages when she was stopped by someone who asked her to show what she was carrying. Burnt pages of Holy Quran were allegedly found in the bag. Local clerics alerted. A charged mob gathered outside the Rimsha’s house soon after. According to the police, the minor girl has been taken into protective custody for her own safety. Rimsha’s family and other Christians have fled from the area in order to save their lives.

Rimsha suffers from Down’s syndrome. The charge of blasphemy against a minor Christian girl who is seriously unwell is beyond comprehension.

This is not the first time in Pakistan that a charge of blasphemy has been followed by intimidation and mobs trying to take matters into their own hands. Blasphemy laws have been misused against religious minorities and unfounded allegations have led to violent attacks against them causing not only loss of life and property but also great fear and intimidation.

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