Thursday, September 29, 2011

Pakistan: 10 year old girl makes simple spelling mistake, now accused of blasphemy and being part of "a conspiracy against Islam"

It is amazing how fast a simple mistake in spelling becomes a major insult to Muslims.  From zero to full hatred in a New York second, this little girl has no idea why she is being treated with such disdain, and her parents are beside themselves trying to figure out why this has become a full-blown Islamic mess.  Although as Christians in a Muslim land I am sure they are aware of the hatred from Pakistanis against non-Muslims and the treatment of churches as well as the local Christian leaders in the past.

We can hope for a good outcome, but hope is not a tactic so a prayer would help more than blind hope.

From ASIANews September 27 by JIbran Khan

Pakistan: ten year old girl accused of blasphemy and sentenced for a spelling mistake

Abbottabad (AsiaNews) - A spelling error has led to an accusation of blasphemy, and serious consequences for a Christian girl of 10 years of age and her family in Abbottabad. Faryal Bhatti, the daughter of a nurse, Sarafeen Bhatti is a student at Colony High School Havelian POF. On September 22, during an examination she misspelled a word in Urdu, putting the full top in the wrong place. Thus the word, referring to the prophet Muhammad, was transformed from "poem of praise" (naat) to "curse (lanaat). The Urdu teacher, Mrs. Fareeda, sternly rebuked Faryal in front of the class and took the matter to the headmaster, even though the child defended herself saying that it was a mistake.

The news of the alleged insult to Muhammad spread through the school, among teachers and the direction accused the girl of blasphemy. The school authorities informed the religious authorities who together with the inhabitants of the colony staged a demonstration, demanding the child be reported to police, expelled from school and her family expelled from the Colony. A mob chanted slogans against Christians, and in Friday sermons religious leaders denounced the episode as "a conspiracy against Islam", which was to be crushed.

In a meeting with teachers and religious leaders the child (in tears) and her mother explained that it was a mistake and apologized. Maulana Syed Ejaz Ali, a religious leader of the Jamia Masjid saw the piece of paper, talked with the child and mother and concluded: "I have no precise idea about the intentions of Faryal, her eyes filled with tears show her innocence, but the error has transformed the word into an insult and this is sufficient reason for a punishment, she should never throughout her entire life, think against Islam. "
To appease the religious the school administration expelled Faryal from school, Islamic clerics lobbied the Colony administration resulting in the mother being fired and forced to leave the residence. Both mother and daughter were transferred to Wah Cantonment by the hospital management. The Masihi Foundation has asked two Islamic clerics in Islamabad to give their opinion on the matter, Maulana Mehfooz Ali Khan and Hussain Ahmed Malik. Maulana said: "It is the innocent mistake of a child. Many Muslim students in the madrasas incorrectly pronounce the Arabic words, changing their meaning, you can not punish a child for an honest mistake, the girl was only 10 years old, she will carry this trauma with her. Faryal Bhatti has been subjected to all of this only because she is Christian, I protest against the decision...

Good news from Islam, these two clerics coming to the defense of the child.  We shall see if they remain in their positions as clerics, as they have now placed themselves on the other side of Islamic doctrine, as defined today by other, recognized Islamic leaders.

Read it all 

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