Told through the eyes of three persecuted female Ahmadiyya, Section 298 unveils the realities of life under Pakistan's deadliest law.
Section 298 of the Pakistan Penal code (also known as the Blasphemy law) openly allows prosecution, imprisonment and death for those who identify as Ahmadi Muslims, a minority Islamic movement in Pakistan. Since 2010 over 200 Ahmadi Muslims have been killed inside their mosques by suicide bombs and vigilante mobs.
Persecuted from birth, Ahmadiyya's are prohibited from working, voting, owning a passport or declaring themselves as Muslim. Section 298 takes us into the heart of the Pakistani Ahmadi community as they fight to keep their families, community and traditions alive.
Mahshad is an Iranian London based filmmaker, visual artist and researcher. Her debut feature film "Cul-de- sac" was screened at twenty-three international film festivals, Amnesty international London and many other human rights and women's rights organisations. Her latest short film " Five" which is about the post traumatic experience of an ex-political prisoner in Iran, is now circulating at international film festivals. Her current research project "Women on Both Sides of the Camera is a feature documentary focusing on the representation of women in Iranian cinema by female filmmakers.
James Dann is a documentary director, specialising in social issue documentaries and human rights. He wanted to make this film because he understands the importance of raising awareness for the Ahmadiyya community and feels the situation in Pakistan is something which needs to be heard, and understood, by people from all countries. James runs a neuro-diverse production company - www.newtakefilms.com, and has gone on to make his own films which aim to shed a light on injustices and inequality.
Fareed serves on the National Executive of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community UK as the National Secretary for External Affairs. He has a particular focus on community engagement and human rights issues. He is a regular speaker in parliamentary meetings and hearings in the UK and EU.
Abbas Faiz is a lecturer in human rights at the School of Law at the University of Essex. He lectures on the full spectrum of human rights discourse, including the concept of human rights, its origin, its application, and the criticism levelled against it; International Human Rights Law; Freedom and Equality; The Right to Life; Freedom of Expression; Freedom of Conscience and Religion; Economic, Social and Cultural Rights; Human Rights and Democracy; The Rights of non-Human Animals; Torture; Fair Trial; Global Poverty and Human Rights; Human Rights and Human Responsibilities; The UN Human Rights System; Women’s Rights; The Right to Development; The right to Health; The Right to Education; The Right to Culture.
He was formerly Amnesty International's Senior Research on South Asia.