Saturday 5 March 2016

Brits for blasphemy

The news about Mumtaz Qadri’s funeral in Pakistan was widely reported in the media and all over the internet. 

In case anyone missed, it, Qadri was  executed in Pakistan or the murder of Governor Salman Taseer whose ‘crime’ was to campaign against Pakistan’s blasphemy laws.

However, in Pakistan, they are very fond of their blasphemy laws, and they are very fond of people like Mumtaz Qadri, so they were up in arms at his ‘martyrdom’ . 
The crowds came out in force waving their arms in the air to show that they were literally up in arms as is their wont. 
Everyone in the media has had something to say about this, even the BBC.  I heard quite a good report about it on FOOC, for example. Since this appalling business took place in Pakistan, one’s shock and disgust might be tempered by thoughts such as, eg., it’s really none of our business, or, par for the course in Pakistan and thank goodness we don’t live in a country like that.
But wait. 
BBC Asian  network mentioned in passing that some Imams in this country were expressing similar sentiments too.
“Now, why is there so much support for Mumtaz Qadri, both in Pakistan and here in the UK? “ asks the Asian Network presenter (of their reporter in Pakistan.)
“It has to do with how controversial the issue of blasphemy is. Of course blasphemy is a capital punishment here in Pakistan; people who are accused of blasphemy are put on death row and even though no-one has actually been hanged or put to death for blasphemy it remains very inflammatory.  
Most people who are accused of blasphemy are either killed or lynched even before their cases make it to the courts, and that’s because of course the society here, you know religious and conservative, many people, specially people with strict Islamic backgrounds see it as an insult to the prophet Muhammed. 

Mumtaz Qadri was executed yesterday, but has been hailed as a hero by some Islamist groups out there; he has also had some support here on Facebook a Bradford Imam has said he was wrongfully executed and martyred in the way of Allah. In another post a sheikh from Coventry has called him our esteemed shahid. “

Well, I thought, now this is our business. 
Cue Harry’s Place. It seems that self-appointed spokesperson for the Muslim community and seasoned BBC ‘expert’ on Islamic issues Mohammed Shafiq is one of those British Muslims who supported Qadri. 

If the government is seriously interested in cracking down on this kind of extremism you’d think they’d ‘do something’. Of course they won’t. Just as they won’t do anything about the rabid antisemitism coming from Shafiq and his cronies. And the BBC will continue to put him on programmes like The Big Questions and PanoramaHere he is in 2007 spouting crap about  “organised sexual exploitation by ruthless criminal gangs”.
“These are criminals. They’re not Asian criminals; they’re not Muslim criminals; not white criminals. They are criminals and they should be treated a s criminals.”

Wrong in 2007; still wrong in 2016.  What sort of country are we? 

Will the BBC let support for Mumtaz Qadri by British Muslims slip by under their noses, unchallenged and uncontested? Do they think we should accept blasphemy laws here, in accord with ‘religious and conservative’ Islam, lest we should be thought intolerant? Do they think it’s okay for supporters of Qadri to preach in British mosques, or are they appalled and outraged enough to investigate it properly?

1 comment:

  1. We shouldn't lead our natural feelings of repugnance when presented with the reality of Sharia undermine our belief in the value of free speech.

    My view is that if someone wants to speak in favour of Sharia - or martyrs for Sharia - they should be allowed to. But if they conspire to introduce Sharia in the UK they should be prosecuted with the full force of the law. That should mean that Sharia courts, for instance, are viewed as conspiracies in as much as they set up a contradictory system of law (i.e. contradictory to UK law).


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