The intention to write this article is to show to some of the friends that how easy and natural it is for a simple person to bring down an atheist in Pakistani society. The need raised, when an open Pakistani atheist named Dr. Shaukat Amanullah Arslan(http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=302406086662&ref=mf) had applied for asylum in UK, he is an open atheist and written and spoken against Islam, which could easily be categorized as blasphemy by any devout Muslim.
Religion has a very prominent role in Pakistani society, though some cities are more religious than others, but there are mosques all around the country, and there are dozens of different movements intended to make people more religious, the most prominent of them is Tableghee-Jamaat (Preachers-Movement) started with religious spirit in mind. On one of there annual gatherings around 2.5 million people come from around the country, it became difficult for them to manage whole city of people so they divided it, into two events separated a week or so.
A common man usually says prayer, not very regularly but if someone is not saying prayer still he feels guilty about it at some level. Friday prayer is special one, on Friday almost everybody prays, including those people who are not religious. And before the Friday prayer, the Imam-e-masjid (leader of the prayer) delivers speech for 30 or more minutes, these speeches could be about anything concerning religious sentiment, there are mosques where content is a bit controlled by the Govt, but they are very rare, so the leader of the prayer, had open hand to control people whatever way he likes. And on Friday he has all the people of community around him.
The Imam-e-Masjid (Leader of the Prayer) is mostly someone who had studied in Madrassas (religious schools) for around 8 years, so this guy is a real fundamentalist, who thinks everything in terms of religion, he only sees religion around him and nothing more. Community people often have great respect for this guy, because he leads them in prayer, In Islam it is considered to be giving respect to allow someone to lead you in prayer. So this leader has a respect of the people they listen to him and accept his words, criticizing or even thinking critically over what he says is very rare. Most of the religious scholars come from very poor families, so they have a harsh taste of life, yet another example of the correlation of poverty and religiosity. Though in recent times there is a trend in good schools of pakistan to blend religion with other knowledge but, students of such schools do not produce Imam-e-Masjid, they may though produce Doctors and Engineers who are extremely religious. One other important fact about religious scholars is that they are very well connected. Everybody knows almost everybody else.
Now if a common man reads, one of the articles written by Arslan (http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=302406086662&ref=mf), it's very natural for him to get extremely angry and it's natural that he could discuss it with other guys around him or his Imam-e-masjid (leader of the prayer) the relevant person in this matter. Now what this leader can do, he can talk about it with his other fellows, who are usually are leaders in some other mosques or running some religious schools, he can also talk about it in one of his Friday prayer, urging people not to send their kids to western countries, because over their, there minds get polluted. He can openly express desire of death for the blasphemy committed, which is totally imaginable and legitimate in Islam. Now once such a topic is discussed in a single Friday prayer, it will be become viral and everybody will join in.. There are extremely religious organizations who really hate even secular people, now when they have a picture and address at their hand, they will just jump over it..
In recent years Pakistani media had gone vibrant as well, and it's always looking for news but mostly it reflects on the same sentiments that masses have, so it's very probable that some channels will pick this up and make it more big..
From there on i don't see what he can do to save himself.. Law can save him by locking him up, if it gets the opportunity. But then he will face trial, and there are laws leading up death penalty for such a crime.
There are other possible ways by which the same thing could happen, but at minimum it really needs one single Muslim, who can understand English to bring down an atheist in Pakistan. The rest of the machinery is already placed in to follow..