On occasion, bold judges do the right thing in Pakistan.
Little media attention was given this week to a significant court ruling in Rawalpindi. A judge ruled murder is still murder—even if it’s done in the name of Allah.
Judge Ali Shah declared Mumtaz Qadri guilty of killing the former governor of Punjab, Salman Taseer.
Taseer, a moderate Muslim, had urged reform of Pakistan’s 295 Blasphemy Law. He had met with Asia Bibi, the Christian mother sentenced to death for blasphemy against the prophet Mohammed.
Qadri was one of the governor’s body guards who shot Taseer to death on an Islamabad street last Jan. 4. He admitted to the murder in court, saying that he objected to Taseer’s call to amend the blasphemy law.
Apparently Qadri believed murder was necessary and justified to defend the honor of his holy prophet. The court felt otherwise.
As he issued his ruling against Qadri, Judge Shah said, “No one could be given the license to kill someone on any condition.”
Qadri was sentenced to death for his crime.
Pray for the courageous judge, Ali Shah. His life is now in danger.That’s because throughout Pakistan, Islamists angrily protested the court’s verdict. Some demonstrators burned an effigy of Judge Shah while others shouted, “Long live Ghazi (Qadri)” and “Down with the judge, the judge is a dog!”
Click on the video below to see images of Gov. Taseer meeting with Asia Bibi, a banner of his convicted bodyguard Qadri, video of the protests and comments from angry protestors.