A man accused of stoning a mob in Pakistan

Multan, Pakistan (AP) — A furious mob stoned a middle-aged man who allegedly blasphemed Koran in a remote village in eastern Pakistan, police said Sunday.

According to police spokesman Chaudhry Imran, a local mosque keeper talks to others before calling the police after seeing a man burning a Islamic scripture inside the mosque on Saturday night. did. The violence took place in a village in the Khanewal district of Punjab.

Imran said police rushed to the scene and found a man surrounded by an angry crowd. Officer Mohammad Ikubal and his two men tried to detain the man, but the group began throwing stones at them, seriously injuring Ikubal and slightly injuring the other two.

Munawar Gurjar, chief of the Turamba police, said he rushed to the mosque for reinforcements, but they did not arrive until the mob killed the man by stoning and hung himself on a tree.

Gurjar said the victim was identified as Mushtaq Ahmed, 41, in a nearby village.

“The unlucky man has been mentally unstable for the past 15 years, and according to his family, he often begged and ate whatever he found and went missing from home for days.” He said. He said his body had been handed over to his family.

Mian Mohammad Ramzan, the mosque’s caretaker, said he was in a hurry to investigate when he saw smoke inside the mosque next to his house. He found one Quran burning and saw a man trying to burn another Quran. He said the people were beginning to arrive for evening prayers as the man was screaming to stop.

Witnesses said police teams arriving in the village before the start of stoning detained the man, but mobs robbed them of him and beat him when they tried to save him.

Later, more officers and police officers arrived at the scene and detained the bodies, they said.

Gujjar, the chief of the regional police, said investigators were trying to identify the perpetrators by scanning the available videos. He said police had detained about 36 men living around the mosque so far, but about 300 suspects had participated.

Prime Minister Imran Khan has expressed distress over the case and said he is asking the Punjab Prime Minister to report on the police response to the case. He said they “failed their duty.”

“We will not tolerate anyone who puts the law in their hands, and the mob Lynch will deal with the full strictness of the law,” he said in a tweet hours after the incident.

Kahn also asked the Punjab police chief to report on the actions taken against the perpetrators of the lynching.

The killings occur months after the Sri Lankan manager of a sporting goods factory in Sialkot, Punjab, lynched on December 3, accused by blasphemous workers.

Mob attacks on those accused of blasphemy are common in this conservative Islamic state. International and national rights groups have stated that blasphemous accusations have often been used to intimidate religious minorities and determine individual scores. Blasphemy is punished for death in Pakistan.

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