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A Christian woman has submitted a mercy petition to the President.

christian women sentenced to deathLAHORE: A Christian woman named Asia Bibi sentenced to death under blasphemy laws by a court in Nankana district has submitted a mercy petition to the President.

Punjab Governor Salman Taseer helped Asia Bibi to submit her petition under Article-45, who met her in the Sheikhupura district jail on Saturday.Asia said in her petition that she had been framed.A resident of Ittawali village in Nankana district.

President Asif Zardari asked The ministry for minorities affairs On Friday, to compile a report on the case within three days.

Asia stated in her petition, She was working in the field on June 14 last year along with other women, including Mafia and Asma. An argument started between her and Mafia and Asma when they refused to drink water fetched by her on the plea that she was a Christian, “This led to use of abusive language and squabble,”

Asia said a false case under blasphemy laws was registered against her when Mafia and Asma approached Qari Salaam, an imam of a mosque, and sought his help “I swore on the Bible that I never uttered any derogatory remark against the Holy Prophet (peace be upon him), but they never listened to me and booked me in a crime that I never committed,” Asia said.

She said a court of additional district and sessions judge in Nankana convicted her under 295-C of the PPC and sentenced her to death.

The court also ordered her to pay Rs100,000 as fine, failing which she would have to undergo an imprisonment of six months.

In her petition, Asia contended that since she was uneducated, she could never be a preacher of Christianity, an allegation made in the FIR.

She said the judge had awarded her punishment by ignoring the law and the facts under “pressure of some religious extremists”.

She argued.“The case was registered in violation of certain provisions of the law and the investigation, too, violated the blasphemy law,”

Ishtiaq Amin, a spokesman for the Governor’s House, said.“Punjab Governor Salman Taseer received the petition from Asia during his visit to Sheikhupura jail on Saturday. The governor will now forward it to President Zardari,”

Punjab’s Chief Public Prosecutor Jahangir Ahmad said Asia had already filed an appeal in the Lahore High Court, seeking suspension of the punishment given by the Nankana court.

That according to Section 156-A, no police officer below the rank of SP could investigate a blasphemy case. But a sub-inspector investigated Asia’s case initially,He said.

he added, However, an officer equal to the rank of SP carried out the investigation into the case at a later stage,

Mr Jahangir added.“The prosecution department, police and others concerned should deal with blasphemy cases very carefully,”

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