LAHORE: An Anti-Terrorism Court (ATC) on Saturday sentenced to death two Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) men, Moavia and Abdullah, for the deadly attack on an Ahmadi place of worship in 2010.
On May 28, 2010, militants attacked two Ahmadiyya places of worship in the city of Lahore with guns, grenades, and suicide bombs, killing 94 people and wounding well over 100. The Punjabi Taliban, a local affiliate of Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan (the Pakistani Taliban or TTP), claimed responsibility. Two men were captured during the attack, but the government was heavily criticised by rights groups for failing to make progress on their trial, seeking repeated adjournments from the court as has the defense.
Today, the ATC sentenced Abdullah was sentenced to death on nine counts, whereas Moavia was given the death penalty on seven counts. Both are also handed a fine of Rs3.3 million.
The ATC hearing took place at Kot Lakhpat Jail where the convicts were held. The single-bench court has also sentenced the accused to serve jail-time of seven years.
The attack was carried out in Lahore’s Model Town and Garhi Shahu localities simultaneously.
The Second Amendment to the 1973 Constitution that declared Ahmadis non-Muslims in Pakistan. Having been deemed ‘wajib-ul-qatl’ (deserving of death) by many in the country, Ahmadis are the only minority in Pakistan who have been hounded for their faith, with the laws of the land strengthening this discrimination.