Saturday, December 04, 2021
Web Desk

Sialkot tragedy: Sri Lankan PM ‘confident’ PM Imran Khan will punish culprits

Shocking to see brutal and fatal attack by extremist mob in Pakistan, says Sri Lankan PM Mahinda Rajapaksa

Web Desk
Prime Minister Imran Khan in meeting with his Sri Lankan counterpart Mahinda Rajapaksa. File photo
Prime Minister Imran Khan in meeting with his Sri Lankan counterpart Mahinda Rajapaksa. File photo

COLOMBO: Sri Lankan Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa on Saturday  expressed shock at the brutal Sialkot lynching of a Sri Lankan national, but expressed confidence in PM Imran Khan’s commitment to punish all those involved.

PM Mahinda Rajapaksa, whose government is a key regional ally to Pakistan, took to Twitter to condemn the horrific Friday incident that saw a mob torture and kill Priyantha Diyawadana, an expat factory manager working in Sialkot, over blasphemy allegations.

“Shocking to see the brutal and fatal attack on Priyantha Diyawadana by extremist mobs in Pakistan. My heart goes out to his wife and family,” he wrote on Twitter.

Sri Lankan factory manager Priyantha Kumara. File photo
Sri Lankan factory manager Priyantha Kumara. File photo

He said that Sri Lanka and her people are confident that PM Imran Khan will keep to his commitment to bring all those involved to justice.

Meanwhile, Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi said he is in contact with his Sri Lankan counterpart and has assured him of justice to the victim's family.

"Sri Lanka has appreciated Pakistan's response towards the incident," Qureshi said, adding that the family has also been approached and "we will satisfy them completely".

The incident

Priyantha Kumara, working as a manager at a private factory in Sialkot, was tortured to death on Friday by a mob after being accused of blasphemy. 

The gruesome incident was dubbed by Prime Minister Imran Khan as "a day of shame for Pakistan".

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 police. 

The brutal murder drew widespread condemnation from senior government functionaries, including the prime minister and president, as well as the military's top leadership, who promised to bring all those involved to the book.

Over 100 arrested

Meanwhile, police have arrested more than 100 suspects, including two described as the main accused, and registered a case in this regard.

According to a handout issued by the Punjab police spokesman, a case has been registered under the provisions of the Anti Terrorism Act with the police as complainant.

He said the role of the arrested people involved in the incident is being determined through CCTV footage.

The spokesman said all accused involved in the tragic incident would be arrested soon and brought to justice.