Pakistan SC adjourns hearing of Christian woman’s appeal
Islamabad, Oct 13 (IANS) The Pakistan Supreme Court on Thursday adjourned for an indefinite period the hearing of a Pakistani Christian woman on death row for blasphemy after a judge refused to hear the case.
Asia Bibi, accused of insulting Prophet Mohammed during an argument with a Muslim woman over a bowl of water, was convicted and sentenced to death in 2010 despite her advocates maintaining her innocence and insisting the accusers held grudges against her, Dawn online reported.
The hearing was adjourned after one judge on the three-member bench, Justice Iqbal Hamid-ur-Rehman, recused on the grounds that he also heard the Salman Taseer case.
Taseer was the governor of Punjab province. He was killed by his own bodyguard in Islamabad in 2011 after speaking out for Asia Bibi.
After the judge recused, a letter was sent the Chief Justice to appoint another judge to the bench.
It is unclear when the hearing will now resume.
Thousands have protested against Asia Bibi and said they would kill her if she were ever released. Among the protesters was the imam in her own village.
Her husband and four daughters live in hiding and say they have received many death threats.
Asia Bibi is the first woman to be sentenced to death under Pakistan’s blasphemy laws and her case is one of the most controversial.