Mob lynches man over blasphemy allegations in Nankana Sahib

IG Punjab suspends two senior cops for negligence

Asif Mehmood/Muhammad Shehzad February 11, 2023


A 35-year-old man arrested over blasphemy allegations was lynched on Saturday in Punjab's Nankana Sahib district after a mob broke into the police station where the victim was being held.

According to reports, the victim was accused of allegedly desecrating the Holy Quran and locals claimed the victim was involved in 'witchcraft'.

Following the accusation, he was handed over to the local police force, however, a mob later formed at the police station after news of the incident spread in the area.

The mob demanded the police hand over the accused.

In videos that surfaced on social media, the mob can be seen scaling the large gates of the Warburton Police Station, forcing it open, after which the crowd entered the building.


The mob then searched the police station for the victime, found and killed him, and then dragged the body naked through the streets as more people threw sticks and stones at the body.

Senior cops suspended

Taking notice of the incident, top officials of the Punjab Police and caretaker Chief Minister Mohsin Naqvi ordered an investigation.

Read People lynch two ‘robbers’ in Surjani Town

Inspector General of Police Punjab Usman Anwar took notice of the matter and immediately suspended the senior cops responsible for the poor security arrangements.

According to a statement by the Punjab police, IG Anwar suspended Nankana Sahib Circle Deputy Superintendent of Police Nawaz Waraq and Warburton Station House Officer Feroz Bhatti.

The IG further ordered the Internal Accountability Branch Deputy Inspector General (DIG) Syed Muhammad Amin Bukhari and Special Branch DIG Raja Faisal to reach the incident location and submit an inquiry report.

IG Anwar maintained that no one was allowed to take the law into their own hands, regardless of how influential they are.

“Strict departmental and legal action will be taken against those responsible for the incident as well as the perpetrators of negligence and incompetence,” he added.

Meanwhile, the situation remained tense in the Warburton area where a large police contingent was deployed to maintain law and order.

'Inhuman torture and killing'

The prime minister’s special representative for inter-religious harmony and Pakistan Ulema Council chief Hafiz Tahir Mehmood Ashrafi condemned the “inhuman torture and killing” of the accused.

In a tweet, Ashrafi stated that killing the accused and burning his body was “a cruel and criminal act” and decried the storming of the police station.

“The Islamic Shariah and the law of Pakistan do not allow anyone to be a litigant by himself, a judge and an arbitrator by himself”.

He highlighted that it was the responsibility of the Punjab government to take immediate action against all culprits.

“All the elements and accomplice in this act should be arrested and [the] case should be tried in the terrorism court,” the tweet stated.

It reiterated that “no group, individual and organization has the right to take the law into their hands and do something the law does not allow”.