Raza Habib Raja
Right now the media is voicing its vociferous opposition to the sentence handed to Dr. Afia Siddiqui. The entire case, even before the verdict was announced, had become an overly emotional episode for the Pakistanis. The media has been whipping a lot of frenzy for a considerable period of time. This case overshadows even horrendous acts of terrorism in terms of the condemnation generated.
I will not debate the technical aspects of the case as frankly the court which gave the verdict was better equipped to weigh and decide. We often have the tendency to become “experts” while having flimsy evidence. During the past two years particularly when the case was being fought in US, Ms Afia’s was simply assumed to be a victim of some grand conspiracy and this presumption was propagated everywhere on the media. The hue and cry which the media constantly whipped and is continuing to whip often rode on nothing concrete in terms of evidence. All the time, Miss Afia was simply assumed as a victim of a grand conspiracy of the United States and nothing else.
Having followed the case over the past two years, I do acknowledge that the circumstances surrounding her disappearance and subsequent reappearance are suspicious. These circumstances do pose several questions particularly on the ways of our intelligence networks. However to spin stories that the entire case was fabricated by the US to punish Miss Afia is frankly stretching things too much.