A man was arrested and booked in Rawalpindi on Saturday in connection with the desecration of the Bible — the holy book of the Christian faith.
The incident came to light when a video showing a man insulting the Bible with a slipper surfaced on Twitter.
In response to the video, the Rawalpindi police stated that the suspect was “swiftly traced” and apprehended through “prompt law enforcement action”.
The police further stated that an “exemplary punishment” would be meted out to the suspect following a “thorough and merit-based” investigation.
Rawalpindi Regional Police Officer Syed Khurram Ali told Dawn.com the arrest was made earlier in the day.
He further stated that the suspect will be presented in court tomorrow (Sunday) to secure his physical remand, enabling the commencement of the interrogation process.
A case regarding the incident was filed at the Morgah police station based on a complaint lodged by Assistant Sub-Inspector (ASI) Naveed Aslam, invoking Section 298 of the Pakistan Penal Code (PPC), which pertains to uttering words with a deliberate intent to wound religious feelings.
In the first information report, a copy of which is available with Dawn.com, ASI Aslam explained that he “saw a viral video on social media in which an individual was seen disrespecting Christianity and the Bible”.
PML-N leader Ahsan Iqbal termed the incident a “shameful act”.
“Where Islam teaches respect for one’s beliefs, it also teaches respect for the beliefs of others. It is the responsibility of the state to provide religious protection to its citizens,” he said, adding that society collectively had to eliminate such behaviour.
It is pertinent to mention that on August 16, a violent mob of hundreds ransacked and torched five churches, attacked the residences of members of the Christian community and the office of the local assistant commissioner, following an alleged incident of blasphemy in Jaranwala town of Faisalabad district.