Shafqat Emmanuel and Shagufta Kausar blasphemy case
Shafqat Emmanuel and Shagufta Kausar
شفقت عمانوایل اور شگفتہ کوثر
Shafqat Emmanuel and Shagufta Kausar
|Known for||Death sentence on charges of blasphemy on 4 April 2014|
Shafqat Emmanuel and Shagufta Kausar are a Pakistani Christian couple who were convicted of blasphemy by a Pakistani court, receiving a sentence of death by hanging. In July 2013 Shafqat Masih and his wife Shagufta Kausar were arrested for sending blasphemous message against the Prophet of Islam. Despite the fact the couple is illiterate, the additional session judge of Toba Tek Singh sentenced them death on 4 April 2014.
Background of the couple
The couple was living in a pathetic situation with four growing children in a mission compound of Gojra Church. Shagufta Kausar was the only working person in the family as Shafqat Emmanuel was confined to a wheelchair, due to an accident in 2004 that resulted him in suffering a spinal injury causing him to be paralyzed below the chest. This couple was living in a miserable condition with their four children, Zain (age 15), Danish (12), Joshua (10) and Sarah (9).
On 4 April 2014, this illiterate couple was given death sentence for sending a text message in English. This is the first Pakistani couple who has been given death sentence in blasphemy laws. According to Shafqat Emmanuel and Shagufta Kausar, the complainants’ lawyers kept proclaiming Koranic references that called for death to blasphemers. Even the prosecuting attorneys told the judge that if he will not give them death sentence, they would be ready to become Ghazi, like Ilm-ud-din and Mumtaz Qadri. Due to the high risk to the couple's security, the whole trial was concluded inside the boundary walls of the prison. Farrukh Saif Foundation and their Partner Emergency Rescue Committee are defending the couple since 2013 and have filed the appeal in the Apex Court against the death sentence .
Appeal against the death sentence
On 8 April 2014 Farrukh Saif Foundation filed appeal against the death sentence of Shafqat Emmanuel and Shagufta Kausar. There has however been no fixed date for the appeal hearing.
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