By Muhammad Zafrulla Khan
This concisely written text presents the teachings of Islam and their distinct superiority over various Articles that make up the Declaration of Human Rights adopted by the General Assembly of the United Nations and universally acclaimed as the greater charter of freedom. The author explains how 1400 years ago, Islam emancipated the poor and oppressed and gave the world the basic prescription for the respect and value of all human beings irrespective of class, colour or creed. Those instructions contained in the Holy Qur'an remain as relevant today as they were at the time that it was revealed. However, with the passage of time, some parts of Muslim society neglected Qur'anic teachings with an inevitable decline in moral standards. The author however concludes on an optimistic note that the revival of Islam is happening and with it a close adherence to the values laid out in the Holy Qur'an
The Mission recommends that:
Removal of Discriminatory Laws and Constitutional Provisions;
Ordinance XX and the blasphemy laws should be amended in order to prevent their misuse and to enable all religious communities, including Ahmadis, to exercise their right to freedom of religion on a footing of equality and without the risk of persecution and prosecution. If that is politically unachievable at this time we recommend that gradual amendments and repeals to the law be achieved over a reasonable time. Incremental changes are to be preferred to no change.
the police, prosecutors and judges receive training in human rights and religious tolerance.
the independence of the prosecution is strengthened and that prosecutors abide by a new Code of Conduct introducing two tests to be passed before a prosecution is supported in court:
Sufficient admissible evidence available to ensure the prospect of a conviction is more than 50%.
A public interest test tailored to the situation prevailing in Pakistan but excluding any consideration of the reactions of religious extremists.
court cases be subject to strict timetables and that there are time limits on those periods of custody a person is denied bail and that there is a presumption in favour of bail.
prosecutions be brought against those who incite violence against persons on account of their different religious faith or sect.
prosecutions be brought against persons who lay false allegations of violations of the blasphemy law.