Supreme Court’s esteem has risen much higher in the eyes of all responsible citizens of Pakistan and the rest of the world by their recent decision. THE JUDGES HAVE SHOWN COURAGE TO DO JUSTICE. This is what the nation expects of them. If the judges of the Supreme Court of Pakistan bow down for considerations, or fear, or expediency then that will be end of the country, the nation, and people’s integrity. The 3 judge bench pronounced Aasiya Bibi NOT GUILTY. This is how an Islamic State should be. The judgment is most convincing. The Islamic traditions are upheld and appropriately quoted. The decision is unanimous by 3 judges, written by the Chief Justice Mr. Saqib Nisar himself, and concurred by Mr. Justice Asif Khosa. The old judgment was on extremely week basis, and unfortunately , under some sort of pressures of interested groups. There are several important parts in the judgment of the Supreme Court which are illuminating and clearly show that the judges have full understanding of Islam and its teachings. Mr. Justice Khosa observes : “….it was revealed that ‘blasphemy’ had been committed( if at all) by the Christian appellant after her Muslim co-workers had insulted the appellant’s religion and had injured her religious sensibilities only because she believed in, and was a follower of, Jesus Christ. According to the HOLY QURAN, a Muslim’s faith is not complete till he/she believes in all the Holy Prophets and Messengers of Almighty Allah including Jesus Christ (Peace be upon him) and all the Holy Books of Almighty Allah including the Holy Bible. From that perspective insulting the appellant’s religion by her Muslim co-workers was no less blasphemous.” In their detailed judgment, the court has made several references to the teachings of Quran and the Prophet (PBUH). The judges are more than aware of the religion Islam and the Constitution of Pakistan. Justice Saqib Nisar has very comprehensively summarized that ” Supreme court belongs to ALL Pakistanis”. Salman Taseer was courageous and a protagonist. Pakistan lost him, but he will be remembered for his conviction, and supreme court decision vindicates him. God bless his soul It is also very important that the role of the present political government be appreciated.The Prime Minister rose above political pressure, exigencies and compromise and said what he needed to say. He said that the Supreme Court decision must be respected, law should take its course, and public property will be protected. State will assert its will and perform its duty. The prime Minister rose above compromise, and asserted on the principle. THIS CAN BE A STATEMENT BEFITTING ‘NAYA PAKISTAN’. One has been disappointed by the weaknesses of the previous governments which bowed to blackmail, failed to control damage to property and business and let the terrorists and extremists rule. It is suspected that some of the extremist groups became allies of some wings of the government, and played a destructive role on the behest of enemies of Pakistan. Such weakness of those governments eroded the public faith in the local brand of democracy, the governance and its corrupted institution. The thinking public was disappointed. The present government has shown the strength by not bowing down to the demand of the street urchins to place Aasiya Bibi on ECL. Why demand that???? Why an innocent person is to be restricted? Do these street urchins realize the pain of a mother living under fear of death and not being able to look after her children for several years? Why do these extremist want her to say something which she does not want to say against the Holy Prophet? Just so that they can score a point? Or to please those who fund them? Or just by total brainless emotionalism? The time has come that the religious leaders realize their responsibilities. They must expel and expose those who have entered their groups wearing garbs and promoted by forces which are anti-Islam and anti-Pakistan. Such are those who incite people on self-immolation, suicide, and disturb national peace. These are the elements that all religious leaders and particularly managers of ‘Madrasahs’ must watch out against. These are enemies of the country and the government must act forcefully. Fortunately PM Imran Khan has shown that intent. From a larger perspective, the religious leaders need to tell their followers as to what is nearer to God Almighty? Forgiveness? Generosity?, Large-heartedness? Tolerance? OR, Revenge? The choice is clear. The life of the Prophet (PBUH) clearly indicates the understanding that all religions MUST be respected, in particular the “AHLE KITAB”. Unfortunately, like many other religions, Islam is also exploited by opportunists and terrorists. They wear the garb of religion and hurt humanity. Pakistan has suffered huge losses and an irreparable loss in the case of the murder of Mr. Salman Taseer. Salman Taseer was a highly educated person, with solid family background, and successful professional and public life, but murdered by an extremist. Salman Taseer was courageous and a protagonist. Pakistan lost him, but he will be remembered for his conviction, and supreme court decision vindicates him. God bless his soul. The rumors are spreading that a suspect, an illiterate religious leader, is inciting people to violate the law of the land. He is making appeals to ‘rise(or ‘sink’) to worst behavior and confront the law and the state. Who is he? How does he claim to be a Muslim? He is one of those who brain wash youth to commit suicide. This is NOT allowed by Islam. This person is promoting ‘fasad’ and must be made an object of the ‘Rud e Fasad’ action. The ‘simple’ in Pakistan get misled and exploited by these ‘Islamists’. No more. Time has come, for citizen loyal to the country and religionn, to defend the constitution and the rule of law. All patriots, all Pakistanis it is time to protect your ideology and not be on lookers only. Do whatever lawfully you can and not assume silence. A silent onlooker is a passive partner in crime. Let us all support the Supreme Court and the law enforcing agencies in this situation. God bless you. The writer is Pakistani theatre, film and television actor, scholar, public speaker, columnist, teacher and dramatist Published in Daily Times, November 4th 2018.