NANKANA SAHIB == Pakistan’s Punjab Inspector General of Police Dr Usman Anwar on Saturday suspended two senior cops for failing to prevent the mob lynching of a man over blasphemy allegations in Nankana Sahib, a Punjab Police statement said, reports Dawn.
A 35-year-old man, who was arrested on blasphemy charges, was lynched on Saturday in Pakistan Punjab’s Nankana Sahib district after a mob broke into the police station where the victim was being held, media reports said.
According to reports, the victim was accused of desecrating the Holy Quran while the locals claimed he was involved in ‘witchcraft’, The Express Tribune reported.
Following the accusation, he was handed over to the local police. However, a mob later gathered at the police station soon after news of the incident spread in the area, the report said.
The mob demanded the police to hand over the accused.
In one video, the mob can be seen scaling the large gates of what appeared to be the Warburton Police Station, and opening it, after which the rowdy crowd outside storms the building.
A second video showed young children — purportedly part of the mob — smiling inside the police station, as broken glass and overturned furniture could be seen strewn about.
The police statement said the IG, Anwar, has suspended Nankana Sahib Circle Deputy Superintendent of Police Nawaz Waraq and Warburton Station House Officer Feroz Bhatti, as reported in the media.
“Total madness!!! An angry mob attacked the police station in Nankana Sahib. Reportedly an accused of blasphemy was killed and his body was burnt by the mob. Apparently, police were unable to control the situation,” read a tweet.
The IG also directed the Internal Accountability Branch DIG Syed Muhammad Amin Bukhari and Special Branch DIG Raja Faisal to reach the spot and submit an inquiry report.
“No one is allowed to take the law into their hands no matter how influential they are,” the IG was quoted as saying.
“Strict department and legal action will be taken against those responsible for the incident, as well as the perpetrators of negligence and incompetence,” the IG asserted.
Meanwhile, Pakistan Ulema Council (PUC) Chairman Tahir Mehmood Ashrafi has condemned the incident, saying it was regrettable the way the charged mob attacked the blasphemy accused, Dawn reported.
“Inhuman torture and killing a person accused of blasphemy and attacking the police station is regrettable and condemnable,” Ashrafi said in a tweet.