A Pakistani judge granted bail Friday to a young,mentally challenged Christian girl Rimsha Masih accused of insulting Islam by burning pages of the Quran. The case has focused attention on Pakistans harsh blasphemy laws,which activists claim are used to persecute minorities and settle personal vendettas.
Judge Mohammed Azam Khan set bail at Rs 1 million,or about $10,500,a significant sum in a country where many families live on only a few dollars a day. A Pakistani group that represents minorities said it would pay the bail.
We feel that this is the real victory of truth and law, said Robinson Asghar,an aide to the Pakistani minister for national harmony who has been closely following the case.
A lawyer representing the girl,Tahir Naveed Chaudhry,said the bail would be paid Saturday,and then she would be freed. She is being held in a prison in Rawalpindi.
The young girl,reported to be 14,was arrested after a mob surrounded her house in a neighbourhood in Islamabad and accused her of burning pages from the Quran.