Sajjad Masih has been acquitted after 10 years in jail. He was charged with blasphemy under section 295-C and 25-D Telegraph ACT in 2013. According to his lawyer, Javed Shatora, Masih was released from central jail, Sahiwal on 26th October, after being cleared by the High Court.
Masih had surrendered himself to the police in Dec 2011 after Tariq Saleem accused him of committing blasphemy.
On 13th July 2013, Masih was sentenced to life imprisonment and fined by the Additional District and Sessions Judge Mian Shahzad Raza of Toba Tek Singh, despite the police and complainant failing to prove the allegation.
In March 2021, the Lahore High Court converted his life sentence into the death penalty, after a petition filed by the Khatam-e-Nabuwwat Forum (KNF, or Movement for the Finality of the Prophethood) seeking the death penalty for such alleged violations.
According to reports, a large number of KNF lawyers swarmed the courtroom during Masih’s appeal hearing and the KNF petition, and intimidation tactics were used to obtain convictions and harsh sentences for Masih.
Javed Sahotra said the court acquitted Masih last month but the news was kept secret for security reasons.