With this, Vishnudev, a native of Alleppey in Kerala, has become the first Indian to be punished under Saudi Arabia’s stricter anti-blasphemy laws that came into force two weeks ago.
The new rules promise up to five years of imprisonment and a fine of up to 3 mln riyals (Rs 5.8 cr) for anyone who mocks or insults the religious and moral values of the country.
The law also covers incendiary and subversive posts and messages, and is applicable to both the creation of such messages as well as their distribution or forwarding.
Vishnudev was found guilty of making remarks against the legal system in Saudi Arabia and against the Prophet of Islam in a conversation on Twitter.
Local representatives of Malayali associations tried to intervene in the case after the young engineer was arrested by Dammam Police four months ago.
Dammam Police conducted surveillance on the online activities of the engineer for several days before arresting him.
The Indian Embassy in Saudi Arabia was also seized of the matter at the trial stage.
@SushmaSwaraj Madam , I am an Exserviceman served Indian Airforce for 21 years. I am in deep trouble as my son who was working in Saudi is arrested and detained from 07 Jun 18. His passport no. is J7442201 and Iqama no is 2324306675. My MADAD grievance No. is SB2FRU103601218.
— Radhakrishnan Nair.V (@rkpoickad) July 10, 2018
They have already punished him 5 years imprisonment and a fine of 1.5 lakh riyals. Only your intervention can save my child. https://t.co/xS4S4mg2iS
— Radhakrishnan Nair.V (@rkpoickad) September 21, 2018