After the lynching of a Sri Lankan man in Pakistan’s Sialkot over alleged blasphemy, Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan has said he would personally oversee an investigation into “the horrific vigilante attack” which he also called “a day of shame for Pakistan”. On Friday, a mob in Pakistan’s Punjab province tortured a man to death before burning his body in Sialkot. Reportedly, the workers of private factories attacked the export manager of a factory and burnt his body after killing him, Dawn newspaper reported.
Taking to Twitter, Khan said: “The horrific vigilante attack on factory in Sialkot & the burning alive of Sri Lankan manager is a day of shame for Pakistan. I am overseeing the investigations & let there be no mistake all those responsible will be punished with full severity of the law. Arrests are in progress.”
The foreign ministry of Sri Lanka has demanded an investigation into the matter while Amnesty international stressed an independent investigation.
A large contingent of police was sent to the city of Sialkot to bring the situation under control what is being deemed as a case of alleged blasphemy. Around 100 people have been arrested so far. The incident took place in the Wazirabad Road area. Several videos doing rounds on the internet showed scores of men gathered at the site.
Police said the victim has been identified as a Sri Lankan national. They added that other details would be shared with the media after the initial probe. This comes as the increasing cases of blasphemy in Pakistan continue to be a cause of concern for rights activists.
Pakistan has registered thousands of blasphemy cases, which are mostly against religious minorities like Hindus, Christians, Shia and Ahmadiya Muslims from 1987 till today, according to several reports by rights groups. A large number of these blasphemy cases in Pakistan are still awaiting justice.