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Pakistan student faces death penalty over WhatsApp message


NEW DELHI: A 22-year-old student in


has been sentenced to death by a court in

Punjab Province

for allegedly committing blasphemy through


According to BBC, the court accused the student of sharing offensive pictures and videos with the intent to provoke religious sentiments among Muslims. In the same case, a 17-year-old was handed a life imprisonment sentence.

Both individuals have denied any wrongdoing.
The complaint against the students was lodged in 2022 by the cybercrime unit of

Pakistan’s Federal Investigation Agency

(FIA) in


, the capital of Punjab. The case was subsequently referred to a local court in Gujranwala. The judges, in their ruling this week, stated that the 22-year-old was sentenced to death for creating and sharing photos and videos that contained derogatory language about Prophet Muhammad and his wives. The younger defendant, being a minor, received a life sentence for sharing the objectionable material.
The plaintiff alleged that he had received the offensive videos and photos from three different mobile phone numbers. The FIA, after examining the plaintiff’s phone, confirmed that “obscene material” had indeed been sent to him. However, the defense lawyers argued that the two students were victims of a false case.

The father of the student facing the

death penalty

, whose identity remains undisclosed, informed BBC that he would be filing an appeal in the Lahore High Court. As for the other student, the court opted for a life imprisonment sentence due to his minor status.
Blasphemy is a capital offense in Pakistan, and some have even been lynched before their trials commence.
In August last year, violent incidents occurred in the city of Jaranwala, where numerous churches and homes were set ablaze following accusations against two Christian men for allegedly desecrating the Quran.

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