Rawalpindi: Reportedly trial court has sentenced a Christian Pastor Zafar Bhatti to lifetime imprisonment over mobile phone sms blasphemy charges.Bhatti, was tried by the court within the premises of the Adiala Central Jail, Rawalpindi. On May 3, the court sent him to lifelong imprisonment despite there was lack of sound evidence against him.
Zafar Bhatti was accused of insulting Islam in cell-phone text messages he sent in 2012. He denied the charges, and pointed out to the court that the cell phone in question was not his name.He had been held in prison.
Gazala Khan,a Christian woman co-accused was declared innocent by the police during the investigation in spite of the fact that the cell-phone in question was registered on her name.She was on bail but in report about her acquittal was nothing mentioned.Reportedly, ,Ghazala Khan (39) passed away in November 2016 after losing a battle with Hepatitis C, thus surviving the ignominy of being sentenced for blasphemy charges.
Since the accusations were leveled against Bhatti, he has been behind the bars in Adiala Jail. In the view of sensitivity of the case, he was being tried in the jail premises. Reportedly on April 24, the court tried him and the decision was reserved. On May 3, he was handed a decree of lifetime imprisonment.
Reportedly, Bhatti has faced several attempts on his life at the prison including an incident of poisoning on March 31st 2103, which left him bleeding from his nose and mouth and left him in critical condition for days.