Ramzan Bibi

USCIRF ADVOCATE: James W. Carr
Country:
Pakistan
Key Fact:

55-year-old Ahmadi Muslim woman from Cheleki village, Punjab province, Pakistan

Charges:

Committing blasphemy against the Prophet Muhammad

Detained Since:

Apr 30, 2020

Biography:

Ramzan Bibi is a 55-year-old Ahmadi Muslim woman from Cheleki village, Punjab province, Pakistan. She is married to Rana Munir Ahmad and has four sons and two daughters.

On April 30, Bibi donated money for a ceremony being held in a non-Ahmadi mosque in her village, but the mosque returned the money. She asked a non-Ahmadi relative why the money was returned, but the conversation turned into a dispute resulting in a verbal and physical altercation. Non-Ahmadi clerics of the village informed the District Police Officer that Bibi had committed blasphemy against the Prophet Muhammad. Police arrested and detained her at the police station. She was charged under Section 295-C of the Pakistan Penal Code, an offence that carries the death penalty. She currently is in a jail at Central Jail Lahore.

A village committee formed in Cheleki to investigate the case concluded that there was no evidence to prove the accusations of blasphemy against Bibi. However, hardline Islamic clerics managed to have a non-Ahmadi resident of the village, who was not present during the dispute, falsely testify against Bibi resulting in her incarceration.

Despite the findings of the village investigative committee Judge Tariq Saleem rejected Bibi’s bail application on 11/18/2020. An appeal has been filed.

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