‘Zero tolerance’: Govt, army determined to curb mob violence after Sialkot lynching

    The federal government has decided to implement a comprehensive strategy to curb violence after a mob lynched a Sri Lankan national in Sialkot.

    The foreigner, Diyawadanage Don Nandasri Priyantha, was working at a factory in Sialkot. Hundreds of people, including workers of the factory, tortured him to death last week and later burnt his body over blasphemy allegations.

    The decision to implement the strategy came during a meeting chaired by Prime Minister Imran Khan in Islamabad, where the overall security situation in the country came under review, a statement from the PM’s Office said.

    Information Minister Fawad Chaudhry, Interior Minister Sheikh Rasheed Ahmed, Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Qamar Jawed Bajwa, National Security Advisor Dr Moeed Yousaf, Chief Minister Punjab Sardar Usman Buzdar, senior military and civil officers were in attendance.

    “The meeting expressed serious concern over the cruel act of killing of Sri Lankan national Mr Priyantha Diyawadanage in Sialkot and expressed the resolve to bring the perpetrators to justice,” the statement said.

    The participants of the meeting were of the view that individuals and mobs cannot be allowed to take the law into their hands and such incidents cannot be tolerated, the statement said.

    “Therefore, a comprehensive strategy shall be implemented to curb such incidents and strict punishments to all the perpetrators shall be ensured,” the statement said.

    The participants praised the bravery and courage of Malik Adnan who endangered his own life to save Diyawadanage and conveyed deepest condolences to the family of the deceased.


    Kumara, who worked as a manager at a private factory in Sialkot, was lynched last Friday by a mob after being accused of blasphemy.

    The gruesome incident was dubbed by PM Imran Khan as “a day of shame for Pakistan” amid widespread outrage.

    Workers of a garment industry, located on Sialkot’s Wazirabad Road, had alleged that the foreigner had committed blasphemy. He was subsequently lynched and his body set on fire.

    The mob had also vandalised the factory and blocked traffic, according to the police.

    The brutal murder drew widespread condemnation from senior government functionaries as well as the military’s top leadership, who promised to bring all those involved to the book.

    Over the past four days, the police have arrested over 130 of the 800 persons linked to the killing. The suspects include the individual allegedly involved in planning the attack as well as others who waged violence and incited others.

    Of the 131 people arrested, 26 played a “central role” in the brutal killing, police said.

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