Man killed by mob in Swat’s Madyan over alleged Quran desecration: DPO

Published June 20, 2024
Visuals of unrest in Swat’s Madyan on Thursday night. — screengrab
Visuals of unrest in Swat’s Madyan on Thursday night. — screengrab
Visuals of unrest in Swat’s Madyan on Thursday night. — screengrab
Visuals of unrest in Swat’s Madyan on Thursday night. — screengrab

A man was killed by a mob over alleged desecration of the Holy Quran in the Madyan area of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa’s Swat district on Thursday night, police said.

Eight people were injured in the unrest, according to Swat District Police Officer (DPO) Dr Zahidullah Khan.

He said the police had moved the suspect of the alleged desecration incident to the police station but a charged mob “attacked the police station and took the suspect away”.

“People set fire to the police station and a mobile vehicle,” the DPO said, adding that the suspect was “torched”. More details are awaited while an investigation is underway.

Videos making the rounds on social media show a mob circling a body on fire in the middle of the road as well as people gathered in huge numbers outside a police station. Dawn.com’s correspondent has reached out to the police for confirmation of the footage.

DPO Khan said a heavy police force was deployed in Madyan and was trying to control the tense situation.

Madyan is one of the famous tourist spots of Swat Valley apart from Kalam, Bahrain and other sites. It is around 245 kilometres from the provincial capital of Peshawar.

A statement posted by the PTI said KP Chief Minister Ali Amin Gandapur took notice of the “unfortunate” incident and contacted the provincial police chief on the matter.

Summoning a report, he ordered the police chief to take measures on an emergency basis to control the situation. Expressing regret over the incident, the chief minister appealed to the people to remain peaceful.

“And the madness continues … We are hellbent to commit suicide as a society,” rued former information minister Fawad Chaudhry.

Fuelled by an extremist religious worldview, violence against non-Muslims in Pakistan has escalated rapidly ever since Gen Ziaul Haq made blasphemy punishable by death. Between 1927 and 1986, only 14 incidents of blasphemy were reported in what is now Pakistan. But after the changes were made in the law, the number surged quickly.

At least 2,120 persons are reported to have been accused of committing blasphemy between 1987 and 2022.

Last month, police saved a Christian man from enraged people in Sargodha on allegations of desecration of the Holy Quran, who died nine days later from his injuries.

In 2022, a middle-aged man was stoned to death by a mob over alleged desecration in a remote village of Khanewal district.

Opinion

Editorial

Population calamity
22 Jul, 2024

Population calamity

PAKISTAN’s population bomb is not ticking anymore; it has already exploded. The detailed results of the 2023...
Blow to occupation
22 Jul, 2024

Blow to occupation

THE International Court of Justice has delivered a legal blow to the decades-old Israeli occupation of Palestinian...
Seeking Priya Kumari
22 Jul, 2024

Seeking Priya Kumari

PRIYA Kumari — the minor girl who vanished on Ashura in 2021 while serving water at a sabeel in Sukkur district ...
Olympics contingent
21 Jul, 2024

Olympics contingent

FROM 10 in Tokyo the last time, it is now down to seven in Paris, and split across just three disciplines. When...
Grave concerns
21 Jul, 2024

Grave concerns

PUNJAB Chief Minister Maryam Nawaz’s open assault on the Supreme Court for ruling in favour of the PTI in the...
Civil unrest
Updated 21 Jul, 2024

Civil unrest

The government must start putting out fires instead of fanning more flames.