- Sri Lankan embassy officials arrive at hospital to escort Priyantha’s body to airport, lay flowers over it.
- Police arrests seven more suspects in gruesome murder case; so far, a total of 131 suspects have been arrested.
- Say suspects were involved in inciting attack, planning to provoke others for violence and were armed with stick.
LAHORE: The remains of Sri Lankan factory manager Diyawadanage Don Nandasri Priyantha — who was lynched by a mob in Sialkot over allegations of blasphemy — were shifted to Lahore’s Allama Iqbal Airport to be sent off to Colombo today.
The Sri Lankan embassy officials arrived at the hospital to escort Kumara’s body to the airport and laid flowers over it.
The body had been shifted to Lahore from Sialkot and Punjab Minister for Minorities Affairs Aijaz Alam represented Punjab Chief Minister Usman Buzdar on the occasion as the latter had to leave for Islamabad for an important meeting.
Priyantha’s last rites will be performed upon arrival of his body in Sri Lanka.
Seven more suspects arrested
Meanwhile, seven more suspects involved in the lynching were arrested, the police said.
So far, a total of 131 suspects have been arrested in connection with the Sialkot lynching case.
A statement issued by the Punjab police spokesperson said that arrested suspects Sikandar, Rashid, Ahmed Shehzad, Zohaib, Muhammad Irshad, Subhan and Umair Ali, were part of the mob that brutally murdered Priyantha.
In particular, Sikandar kept gathering people on the factory’s rooftop and inciting the attack, Shehzad was armed with a stick and Zohaib was involved in planning to provoke others for violence, the spokesperson said.
He said that the latest arrests have been made with the help of CCTV camera videos and mobile phone data. Interrogation of the arrested suspects has started, he added.
Speaking about the progress in investigations of the case, 26 suspects were found to have played a key role in the gruesome murder.
He said that CM Buzdar and the Punjab inspector-general of police are continuously monitoring the investigations and process of the identification of arrested suspects is underway.
Diyawadana Priyantha, working as a manager at a private factory in Sialkot, was lynched on Friday by a mob after being accused of blasphemy.
The gruesome incident was dubbed by Prime Minister Imran Khan as “a day of shame for Pakistan”.
Workers of a garment industry, located on Sialkot’s Wazirabad Road, had alleged that the foreigner had committed blasphemy. He was subsequently lynched and his body set on fire.
The mob had also vandalised the factory and blocked traffic, according to the police.
The brutal murder drew widespread condemnation from senior government functionaries, including the prime minister and president, as well as the military’s top leadership, who promised to bring all those involved to the book.