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Another 18 suspects arrested and remanded in Sialkot lynching case

13 Dec 2021

Pakistani police have arrested 18 more suspects purportedly involved in the killing of Sri Lankan national Priyantha Kumara, who was the manager of a sports equipment factory in Sialkot. A mob of hundreds of enraged individuals including employees descended on the factory after he was accused of blasphemy. The mob grabbed him, killed him and burned the body. A first information report (FIR) was registered against 900 staffers of the business on the application of Uggoki Station House Officer (SHO) Armaghan Maqt under sections 302, 297, 201, 427, 431, 157, 149 of the Pakistan Penal Code (PPC) and 7 and 11-WW of the Anti-Terrorism Act (ATA). With the latest arrests, the total number of suspects in custody has risen to 52, a spokesperson of Sialkot police, said. The suspects were later produced before a special anti-terrorism court in Gujranwala which remanded them in police custody for 15 days, Pakistani media reported. The judge directed police to present the suspects again on December 28. “34 primary suspects are already in remand with police. More than 100 individuals are [now] under investigation,” the spokesman said. Last week, the government of Punjab decided to conduct the trial in the case on a daily basis. In a meeting of the cabinet committee on law and order, Punjab’s Law Minister Basharat Raja, who was presided over the sitting, directed the investigators to file the case challan in court within 14 days. The prosecution was also directed to set up a special cell to monitor the case trial. The meeting was attended by all the regional police officers (RPOs) and commissioners of the province via video link. Source: Pakistan Today

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