Policemen Escaped As Mob Tortured And Burned Blasphemy Accused In Nankana

Policemen Escaped As Mob Tortured And Burned Blasphemy Accused In Nankana
A blasphemy accused in Nankana Sahib was forcibly taken out of the police station by an angry mob of people and tortured to death. Prime minister Shehbaz Sharif has taken notice of the incident and ordered an inquiry.

Pakistan's deeply religious and spiritually skeptical society has become steadily intolerant over the years, and blasphemy allegations under the country's draconian 'blasphemy laws' are a vicious tool used to oppress religious minorities and even exact vengeance on fellow Muslims. The country's decrepit legal system provides few protections to those accused of hurting religious sensibilities of the overzealous Muslim majority.

The unfortunate incident took place in Warburton area of ​​Nankana Sahib, where the accused, a Muslim male, was detained in Warburton police station on charges of 'blasphemy' and 'witchcraft' by using pictures of his ex-wife. He was also accused of burning pages of the Holy Quran. He had recently returned after spending 2 years in jail.

An angry mob attacked the police station where the accused was locked up, while the SHO of the police station and other employees of law enforcement escaped with their lives. Sources say the mob first dragged the accused out of the lockup, and then proceeded to torture him before killing him and setting his body ablaze.

Inspector General (IG) of Punjab police Dr. Usman Anwar has suspended DSP Nankana Circle Nawaz Virk and SHO Warburton Feroze Bhatti for their criminal negligence. The IG has further directed the Internal Accountability (IA) Branch Deputy Inspector General (DIG) Syed Muhammad Amin Bukhari and Special Branch DIG Raja Faisal to reach the incident location and thoroughly investigate the matter before submitting an inquiry report.

On the other hand, prime minister Shehbaz Sharif has ordered an investigation into the Warburton police station incident. The PM asked why the police did not stop the violent crowd, and said that the rule of law must be ensured at all costs.

"No one should be allowed to influence the law," the premier said. The prime minister added that the first priority of the institutions responsible for law and order is peace. "Peace and order should always come first," he said.

Caretaker chief minister Punjab Mohsin Naqvi has also ordered IG Punjab to submit a report to him on the Warburton blasphemy lynching incident.