Musharraf to Face Blasphemy Charges?


I have to confess to a feeling of schadenfreude over the prospect of former Pakistani strongman Pervez Musharraf facing blasphemy charges. An attorney in Pakistan is demanding that he be charged with blasphemy over a 2007 military operation that killed some extremists and destroyed their Qurans too.

A lawyer on Monday moved the Islamabad High Court (IHC) seeking action against former president Pervez Musharraf under the blasphemy law for allegedly desecrating the holy Quran and other religious books during the July 2007 Lal Masjid operation.

In his petition, advocate Tariq Asad, who is the counsel for the newly-established Shuhada Foundation of Pakistan Trust, contended that Musharraf was responsible for launching the operation during which “not only a large number of civilians were killed but also copies of the holy Quran, religious books and research materials were destroyed.”

The petition said the objective of the operation was “not only to commit murders of religious scholars, preachers and teachers but also to destroy the mission of the preaching of Islam, which prima facie was tantamount to the commission of the offence of blasphemy.”

I’m opposed to blasphemy laws, but it’s kind of refreshing to seem them used against people who have abused their power rather than against someone with no power at all.

Comments

  1. says

    I have to confess to a feeling of schadenfreude over the prospect of former Pakistani strongman Pervez Musharraf facing blasphemy charges.

    I have to confess to a feeling of worry over the prospect of a political climate where NO ONE, even a dictator with an army at his command, is safe from such uncontrollable religious fanaticism.

  2. Alverant says

    I read this and I think of how some people treat the US flag in this country. It also gave me a short film idea.

    The scene starts out in house in Iran at night. The head of the house accidentally bumps over a candle and sets the house on fire. He has to make a choice between saving his wife and daughter and saving the family Quran. For precious seconds he’s frozen in indecision. Suddenly the word “Allah” appears in the air and wraps itself around the book before it and the book vanishes. The man is then free to save his family. But outside is the Religious Police are ready to charge him with blasphemy for not saving the Quran. The man talked about the miracle but that only gets the cops angrier since they see it as a way to get out of the charges. In the end, he and his family are executed. The film ends at the unmarked mass grave where they are buried. The word “Allah” wrapped around the Quran appears, dropped off the book, and vanished again.

  3. busterggi says

    All the Abrahamic religions command their followers to not worship false idols, graven images, etc yet somehow that doesn’t apply to man-made/machine-made paper & ink – believers need something solid & real to reinforce their beliefs and their god certainly doesn’t fulfill that need.

  4. Ichthyic says

    I have to confess to a feeling of worry over the prospect of a political climate where NO ONE, even a dictator with an army at his command, is safe from such uncontrollable religious fanaticism.

    you haz a point.

    Makes me wonder if the radical Sunnis in Iraq would have done in Hussein all on their own right about now…

  5. grumpyoldfart says

    The secular Governments think it’s wonderful when those nice religious leaders promise to deliver bulk votes from parishioners in exchange for nothing more than the acknowledgement that religion plays an important part in the life of the hoi-poloi. A few years later…blasphemy laws.

  6. Ichthyic says

    ^^hard to tell whether you are talking about the West, or the Middle East there, frankly.

    I’m guessing that’s part of the point though.

  7. justsomeguy says

    “Innocent civilians were killed, which is pretty bad, I guess. Also, COPIES OF OUR FAVORITE BOOK WERE DESTROYED KILL HIM WITH FIRE.”

  8. Abby Normal says

    If you do good, you do good to yourselves. (likewise) If you do evil, you do evil to yourselves.
    -Qur’an: Chapter 17, Verse 7

  9. steffp says

    I’m opposed to blasphemy laws, but it’s kind of refreshing to seem them used against people who have abused their power rather than against someone with no power at all.

    Well… You know that’s a Pakistan Taliban lawyer you are referring to?

    “Lal Masjid” is known in the West as the Islamabad “Red Mosque” incident in 2007. Clearly an insurgency, with armed zealots burning brothels and videoshops in the name of the lord, kidnapping soldiers and holding hostages, which led to the siege and storming of the heavily fortified Red Mosque compound. One of the few occasions on which Musharraf confronted the Afghan Taliban. Now these (SFP) terrorists want to put the blame on him. They are even busily rewriting Wikipedia articles – see the different versions ibid “Lal Masjid” (rather neutral) and “Lal Masjid siege”(Deobandi/Taliban sided).
    They are the guys who follow the fatwa that Officers of the Pakistan Army who died fighting the Taliban should not be buried as Muslims. They’re zealots, martyr material.
    Not funny.

  10. John Hinkle says

    Musharraf to Face Blasphemy Charges?

    That’ll probably go down as well as criminal charges against Bush and Cheney for torture. But hey, I could be wrong. Religion does have a tendency to be more powerful than right and wrong.

  11. David Marjanović says

    I have to confess to a feeling of worry over the prospect of a political climate where NO ONE, even a dictator with an army at his command, is safe from such uncontrollable religious fanaticism.

    Scroll back up, and you’ll see “former Pakistani strongman” and “former president”…

  12. hohnjamilton says

    Is deleting a bookmark for an online Quran blasphemy? So many questions when one tries to blend bronze and information ages.

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