ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Imran Khan on Tuesday categorically declared that the government would go after all those who exploit religion as a pretext for the justification of violence.
Speaking at a condolence reference for Sri Lankan national Priyantha Kumara, who was lynched to death by a mob in Sialkot last week, he said: “From now on, the government will not spare anyone. As long as I’m here, no one can dare do it”.
He said that the Holy Prophet Muhammad (Peace Be Upon Him) was sent as a blessing for the entire human race, not just Muslims.
“His message was based on two principles: humanity and justice…these two traits distinguish humans from animals,” he said, adding that what happened in Sialkot was an example of might is right — a rule that prevails in the jungle, but has no place in human societies.
He said that the kind of events we have been witnessing in the country lately, where some people use religion to torture and burn other human beings, are unacceptable.
He also talked about people who are falsely accused of blasphemy and are sent to jail. “Some people are falsely accused of blasphemy and are thrown in jail to rot in there, as neither any lawyer, nor any judge, could represent or hear their cases due to fear,” he added.
He went on to say that this kind of sham justice cannot be found in any humanitarian society of the world.
Citing the example of the Army Public School massacre, Khan said that since that day, the whole country has decided not to tolerate any such incident again. “Since then, all Pakistanis have united against terrorism — something which had been unprecedented in the country,” he added.
He said that the business community of Sialkot has accumulated $0.1 million for the family of the deceased, and that they will continue to send his salary to his widow each month.
The PM then spoke about the establishment of the Rehmatul lil Aalameen Authority and said that he came up with the idea to bring together Islamic scholars and devise strategies to spread the true message of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) in society.
We want our children to know who the Holy Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) was and what was his life like, he said, adding to prove oneself to be a true ardent follower of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (PBUH), one has to follow his teachings.
The prime minister showered praise on Malik Adnan, a production manager at the same factory, who made last ditch effort to save the Sri Lankan manager from enraged mob.
He said that the way Adnan made effort to save the deceased by risking his life is commendable and the whole nation is proud of him. “Like saying goes that one moral man is an army…what you [Adnan] did is commendable. We are proud of your bravery and courage, as you proved that moral strength is greater than physical strength,” the prime minister said, while addressing Adnan who was present at the function as he was specially invited to the PM House as a special guest to appreciate his efforts to save the foreign national.
“We are optimistic that the young people in the country will remember Malik Adnan as a human being who stood up in front of hundreds of animals,” he commended.
He said that Adnan will be granted an award for his bravery on March 23, 2022. “As long as I am here, I will not allow incidents like Sialkot lynching to happen again,” he concluded.
Kumara was working as a manager at a private factory in Sialkot. Last week, he was lynched by a mob after being accused of alleged blasphemy. The High Commissioner of Sri Lanka to Pakistan, Mohan Wijewickrama, cabinet ministers, religious scholars, and other senior officials were also present.
Copyright Business Recorder, 2021