Punjab Assembly resolution seeks most stringent anti-blasphemy laws.


Byline: Intikhab Hanif

LAHORE -- The Punjab Assembly on Tuesday unanimously passed a resolution asking the federal government to make new or improve existing laws to sternly punish blasphemers and set up a Saudi Arabia like central screening or filtration system to intercept blasphemous material on social media.

The session of the Punjab Assembly prorogued sine die when PTI and PML-N members were hurling accusations against the leadership of each other, disallowing Law Minister Raja Basharat to give any assurance to PPP's Hasan Murtaza who sought action against sugar mills in his hometown which had prematurely ended crushing of sugarcane to blackmail the growers.

The resolution was presented by Mines Minister Ammar Yasir. It said there existed anti-blasphemy laws in the country but they were not being enforced in letter and spirit, allowing some people to commit blasphemy in the garb of freedom of expression and hurt feelings of Muslims.

It said blasphemous content was available on social media and also in the international print and electronic media. Some importers too were importing books containing such material, hurting the feelings of Muslims not only in Pakistan but also abroad.

'Therefore, this house demands the immediate establishment of a Saudi Arabia like central filtration and screening system to prevent blasphemous content. Laws should immediately be made to prevent printing and sale of local or foreign religious books without the certification of Muthidda Ulema Board and the federal religious affairs ministry, also disallowing presentation of such material in regular and social media.

'The books containing...

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