Pakistan: Mob beats to death Muslim man accused of blasphemy


Rimsha Masih, a Christian girl accused of blasphemy sits in helicopter after her release from jail in Rawalpindi on September 8, 2012. Masih was arrested on August 16 for allegedly burning pages containing verses from the Koran but she was released from a prison in Rawalpindi after a court accepted her bail application.


Farooq Naeem

KARACHI, Pakistan— A mob stormed a police station and beaten to death a Muslim man accused of desecrating the Quran in Sindh's Seeta village .

According to BBC News, the unnamed victim had been handed to the police after burnt pages of the Quran were found in a mosque in Dadu district, an area about 200 miles north of Karachi, where he had been staying.

However, as word spread across the village, residents of the village started gathering at the police station. Once the mob gathered strength, they overpowered the police officials and took the accused into custody. They thrashed him before setting him on fire.

The man was possibly mentally unstable, the Associated Press reported.  

The local police chief and five of his officers have been arrested for failing to protect the man. However, witnesses at the scene told Sindh Express that there were more 200 people against a half dozen policemen.

More than 200 villagers have been booked for murder and obstructing police from duty, Express Tribune reported.

Pakistan's blasphemy laws are often misused to persecute minorities or settle scores. Most recently, international attention focused on the case of a Christian teenager Rimsha Masih. Masih, who was mentally handicapped, had been accused of desecrating the Quran. She was released after a neighbor gave evidence that showed she was framed.  

Past attempts by governments Pakistan to review or alter the controversial laws have met with violent opposition from hardline Islamist parties.