ATC sentences Sialkot citizen for attempting to justify lynching of Priyantha Kumara

ATC sentences culprit Adnan to one year in prison and fine of Rs10,000 after finding him guilty of 'justifying' foreigner's brutal murder

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Sri Lankan factory manager Diyawadanage Don Nandasri Priyantha (left) and a screengrab of a video of the attack on him. Photos: file
Sri Lankan factory manager Diyawadanage Don Nandasri Priyantha (left) and a screengrab of a video of the attack on him. Photos: file

  • Police had filed a case against Sialkot citizen identified as Adnan for uploading a video in favor of the brutal murder of Priyantha Kumara. 
  • During the hearing, Adnan admitted to the charges brought against him.
  • Sri Lankan citizen Priyantha Kumara had been savagely lynched in Sialkot over a spurious blasphemy allegation.

An Anti-Terrorism Court (ATC) on Friday convicted a Sialkot citizen, identified as Muhammad Adnan, for supporting and justifying the brutal murder of Sri Lankan citizen Diyawadanage Don Nandasri Priyantha in a YouTube video soon after the incident.

The foreign worker, commonly known as Priyantha Kumara, was savagely lynched in Sialkot over spurious blasphemy allegations late last year. 

According to case details, police had filed a report against Adnan on the complaint of Sub Inspector Mubarak Ali two days after the brutal murder of Priyantha Kumara. 

The First Information Report (FIR) said that Adnan had uploaded a video on YouTube in which he supported the actions of those involved in the lynching of the Sri Lankan citizen.

Police had subsequently arrested Adnan and produced him in ATC Gujranwala.

During the hearing of the case, the accused had admitted to the charges framed against him, on which the court sentenced him to one-year imprisonment and a penalty of Rs10,000.

The incident

Priyantha Kumara, working as a manager at a private factory in Sialkot, was beaten to death in December by a mob after being accused of blasphemy in highly controversial circumstances. 

Workers of a garment industry, which was located on Sialkot’s Wazirabad Road, had alleged that the foreigner had committed blasphemy, reportedly after he tore down some posters from the factory's walls ahead of a scheduled inspection. 

The mob subsequently murdered him and set his body on fire.

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

The brutal murder had elicited shock and drawn widespread condemnation from the Pakistani citizenry, 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.

Police had subsequently arrested more than 100 suspects for their suspected involvement in the case, including two individuals described as the main accused.