Pakistan

Woman accused of blasphemy released on bail

ISLAMABAD: The Supreme Court has granted bail to a woman who had been imprisoned for over three years under a blasphemy charge.

A three-judge bench, headed by Justice Mian Saqib Nisar, granted bail to Waliha Irfat – currently incarcerated at the Kot Lakhpat Jail, Lahore – with directions to submit bail bonds worth Rs25,000.

Prominent lawyer and rights activist Asma Jahangir represented Ms Irfat before the court. She argued that her client be granted bail until the case was decided.

Under the third proviso incorporated into Section 497 of the Criminal Procedure Code (CrPC), no woman could be kept behind bars for more than six months, unless convicted.

In her petition, Ms Jahangir pleaded that her client was innocent and being a Muslim, she could not even conceive of committing such a heinous crime.

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