Mardan university student accused of blasphemy beaten to death on campus

Published: April 13, 2017
Abdul Wali Khan University Mardan 

Abdul Wali Khan University Mardan PHOTO: FILE

Abdul Wali Khan University Mardan 

MARDAN: A journalism student was lynched at Abdul Wali Khan University (AWKU), Mardan in broad daylight on Thursday after being accused of blasphemy.

The deceased was identified as Mashal Khan, a resident of Swabi and a student at AWKU’s Journalism and Mass Communication department.

A friend of the deceased student told The Express Tribune that a mob attacked him before shooting him in the head and chest. He added that the mob then continued to beat his body with sticks.

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The students then began protesting at the campus and shut it down.

A police contingent that arrived at the scene immediately took custody of the body, but students kept demanding it back.

Mardan DSP Sheikh Maltun Mardan Haider Khan confirmed to The Express Tribune that the victim had been murdered by his fellow students.

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He added that five students were injured in clashes but police managed to bring the situation under control.

Later, K-P IG Salahuddin Mehsud told The Express Tribune that arrests have been made and an investigation is already under way. He added that further arrests will be made after the police identify other members of the mob.

“Blasphemy is yet to be confirmed,” IG Mehsud added.

A notification issued by the police stated that 59 people were arrested from the university for their suspected involvement in the lynching.

The body has been shifted to District Headquarters Hospital for an autopsy.


A varsity notice stating that the university is indefinitely closed. PHOTO: Express

Following the incident, AWKU Assistant Registrar Ashoor Khan issued a notification stating the university will be closed until further notice.

Ten students have been arrested after Thursday’s attack the grounds of a university in the northern city of Mardan, local police chief Mohammad Alam Shinwari said. “After severe torture that led his death, the charged students then wanted to burn his body,” said Shinwari.

One of Khan’s teachers recalled that he was a passionate and critical student. “He was brilliant ‎and inquisitive, always complaining about the political system of the country, but I never heard him saying anything controversial against the religion,” said the teacher.

Blasphemy carries the death penalty in Pakistan. In many cases, an accusation alone is enough to inspire vigilante action against suspects.

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Reader Comments (19)

  • Basheer Pakistan
    Apr 13, 2017 - 5:45PM

    Not AgainRecommend

  • ghulam murtaza dahar
    Apr 13, 2017 - 5:48PM

    This is insane.Recommend

  • Hasan
    Apr 13, 2017 - 6:13PM

    The people who did this must be brought to justice.Recommend

  • Ayesha
    Apr 13, 2017 - 6:39PM

    Please teach these goons a lesson. I hope imran khan takes a stand and gets the mob jailed.Recommend

  • Haji Atiya
    Apr 13, 2017 - 7:35PM

    Accusing someone of being blasphemous has become a convenient tool of not only vengeance but mob justice in the hands of usually the mindless and irrational.Recommend

  • Parvez
    Apr 13, 2017 - 9:59PM

    Simply goes to show what goes on in the name of education in our so called universities.Recommend

  • mateen
    Apr 14, 2017 - 12:18AM

    I can’t dare to call this act of cruelty; as I might be blamed of Blasphemy, and meet the same fate.Recommend

  • mateen
    Apr 14, 2017 - 1:05AM

    We cannot even condemn this, fearing we might be charged of Blasphemy.Recommend

  • Khan
    Apr 14, 2017 - 1:10AM

    This is a terrorist act. Those who took part in the lynching must be tried
    by the military courts.Recommend

  • Mehmood
    Apr 14, 2017 - 1:23AM

    What is it with Pakistan and religion? Your whole lives revolve around it, holding your country back. Thankfully my parents had the good sense to escape to a liberal western democracy where you don’t get battered for disagreeing with someone else’s view on religion! Recommend

  • Insaaf Hussain
    Apr 14, 2017 - 2:39AM

    It is only a reflection of the general climate of hate and intolerance in the country.Recommend

  • baber
    Apr 14, 2017 - 3:19AM

    Wait for more details inquiry this is not related to blasphemy this is something related to politics Recommend

  • Nishant
    Apr 14, 2017 - 6:11AM

    Just saw the video of young boys pelting his bleeding corpse with stones

    Each trying to up the other

    But talking about this will make me an Islamlphobic bigot

    The peacekeepers of the religion of peace on overtime Recommend

  • Kashif Naqvi
    Apr 14, 2017 - 7:41AM

    Devastatingly sadRecommend

  • vaidyanathan
    Apr 14, 2017 - 9:15AM

    as the government so the people and so the army. Recommend

  • Ameer Qaisrani
    Apr 14, 2017 - 11:17AM

    Punish all these murderers only then we can see some hopeRecommend

  • khan
    Apr 14, 2017 - 4:57PM

    Shame on these people who consider themselves as the guards of islam…these stupid terrorists..these foolish,ignorant people who dont even understand the real meaning of blasphemy but just to get involved in some incident they rush and start fighting and killing..they cant be muslims..they are not doing this for religion but actually they are doing this to satisfy their cruel,wicked and killer nature
    shame shame and shameRecommend

  • Pops
    Apr 15, 2017 - 2:34AM

    I have seen the video. People throwing rocks at his head.
    I think US bombed the wrong place with MOAB. Should have been this university.
    Blood thirsty barbarians.Recommend

  • Tahir
    Apr 16, 2017 - 1:38AM

    if some thing found suspicious about his involving in blasphemy, this matter should have been brought into the notice of university management and local police. with out any involving of qazi or mufti how the student of university decided lynching?Recommend

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