Asia Bibi Acquittal: SC orders protest victims to be compensated within 30 days

LAHORE: On Saturday, the Supreme Court of Pakistan directed the federal and provincial governments to compensate within a month those who suffered losses during religious parties’ protests following Asia Bibi’s acquittal.

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A two-judge bench headed by Chief Justice of Pakistan Justice Mian Saqib Nisar heard at the SC’s Lahore Registry a suo motu case pertaining to the losses and damage to property during the three-day long countrywide sit-ins staged by religious parties following a top court verdict acquitting Asia Bibi in a blasphemy case against her.

During the hearing, the chief justice remarked, “Reports have been submitted, we should be informed when and how compensatory payments will be made.”

The advocate general Punjab informed the court, “The federal cabinet has approved a compensation package amounting to Rs262 million.”

The court then directed federal and provincial governments to make compensation payments within a month. Further, the chief justice ordered that an implementation report be submitted in court after the payments are made.

Protests had erupted in several cities after the Supreme Court acquitted Asia Bibi, a Christian woman who had been sentenced to death on blasphemy charges, on October 31.

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