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Amnesty International alarmed over death of man to mob violence over blasphemy

Rights group says perpetrators behind Sialkot general manager’s murder must be brought to justice swiftly

The South Asia chapter of rights group Amnesty International has expressed alarm over the lynching and burning of a factory general manager in Sialkot and has called for an unbiased and independent inquiry into the event.

The statement from the rights group came after a foreign national, working as a general manager in a factory at Sialkot, was beaten and burnt to death following allegations of blasphemy.

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The rights organization called for a swift investigation into the matter and stated that those involved should be brought to justice.

Amnesty International South Asia also said that this environment that enabled abuse must be rectified.

The incident took place on Friday morning. According to Sialkot District Police Officer Umar Saeed Malik, the deceased was identified as Priyantha Diyawadana, a general manager at a textile factory in Sialkot.

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According to social media posts, Diyawadana drew the anger of a charged mob after he tore a poster, which contained sacred names.

Some social media users, citing the factory workers, said the deceased was unaware of the fact that tearing the poster could be sacrilegious.

Blasphemy is a sensitive issue in Pakistan, and allegations often follow people falling victim to mob violence.

Last week, a police station in Charsadda, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP), was set on fire by an enraged mob which was demanding that authorities hand over a man arrested for alleged blasphemy.

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