Updated December 5th, 2021 at 13:26 IST

Sialkot lynching: Protest staged outside Pakistan High Commission in Colombo

A large crowd, including a group of monks, gathered outside the Pakistan High Commission in Colombo on Sunday to condemn the lynching of Sri Lankan national.

Reported by: Aparna Shandilya
Image: ANI | Image:self

A large crowd, including a group of monks, gathered outside the Pakistan High Commission in Colombo on December 5 to condemn the lynching of a Sri Lankan executive in Sialkot, Punjab province, Pakistan, media agency ANI reportedAccording to local media reports, Sialkot police stated that a top Sri Lankan textile industry executive was lynched and his body burned by supporters of a radical Islamist party in Pakistan's Punjab region over blasphemy charges on Friday.

A police official told PTI that Priyantha Kumara, who was in his 40s, was the general manager of a textile industry in the Sialkot district, around 100 kilometres from Lahore. Kumara allegedly tore a Tehreek-e-Labbaik Pakistan (TLP) poster with Quranic verses written and dumped it in the trash, according to a police official, PTI reported. A mob, incensed by the alleged blasphemy event, began to gather outside the factory from surrounding neighbourhoods, the majority of whom were TLP activists and supporters. They dragged the Sri Lankan executive, from the factory and tortured him badly. Before police arrived at the crime scene, the mob burned his body after he succumbed to his wounds.

SL PM Mahinda Rajapaksha expressed sadness at the Sialkot lynching

Punjab police announced late Friday that they had apprehended 100 individuals after identifying them through viral video footage. Sri Lankan Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksha expressed his sadness at the lynching of a resident of his country in Pakistan, saying he was shocked to see the violent and tragic attack on Priyantha Diyawadana by extreme mobs in Pakistan. In a tweet, Rajapaksha remarked, "Shocking to see the brutal and fatal attack on Priyantha Diyawadana by extremist mobs in #Pakistan. My heart goes out to his wife and family. #SriLanka and her people are confident that PM @ImranKhanPTI will keep to his commitment to bring all those involved to justice."

Imran Khan, Pakistan's prime minister, condemned the assassination and stated he was personally directing the inquiry and that those responsible will be held accountable. "The horrific vigilante attack on a 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 the full severity of the law. Arrests are in progress," he tweeted.

The Imran Khan government recently revoked a ban on the TLP after making a secret agreement with it, releasing its leader, Saad Rizvi, and over 1,500 people accused of terrorism. In exchange, the TLP concluded its week-long sit-in in Punjab by dropping its demand that the French ambassador be expelled over the subject of blasphemous drawings in France.

(With inputs from agencies)

Image: ANI


Published December 5th, 2021 at 13:26 IST