The atrocities against minorities in Pakistan continued unabated after a Muslim mob unleashed violence against Hindus in Ghotki in Sindh province of Pakistan. The violence followed a complaint by a Muslim student accusing his Hindu school principal of making an alleged blasphemous remark.
Now, the student whose complaint triggered the massive violence has confessed that the blasphemy complaint was “cooked up” to target the Hindu school principal.
Muhammad Ihtisham, on whose complaint his father had filed a First Information Report (FIR) against the principal of Sindh Public School, has revealed in a social media post that he was very angry with the principal Notan Lal for scolding him. Since he had not memorised his lesson, the principal had scolded him. This prompted him to make false allegations of blasphemy against the principal. He added that he had no clue that the issue would blow up to such a proportion. He urged “Sir Notan” for forgiveness in the social media post.
The minority Hindus in Pakistan had to pay the price for Mohammed Ihtisham’s personal grudge. An angry mob had attacked the SSD Dhaam Mandir and broken the shops in Jillani Market belonging to Suresh Kumar, Gopi Chand, Gurmukh Das and others in broad daylight on September 16 after Ihtisham had accused his school principal of making ‘blasphemous’ remarks.
Properties worth millions of rupees were destroyed and several shops belonging to the Hindu community looted on Sunday by an enraged Muslim mob in Ghotki town.
Later, the angry mob blocked the National Highway in protest against the alleged the teacher. They raised slogans and demanded that authorities arrest Prof Lal over the blasphemous remark. The violence also occurred in towns like Mirpur Mathelo and Adilpur, apart from Ghotki.
Notan Lal was booked under Article 295(c) that pertains to “derogatory remarks in respect of the Holy Prophet” of the Pakistan Penal Code and arrested following the protests, road blockages and riots in Ghotki city and its adjacent small towns. Meanwhile, the police also registered three cases against more than 200 people in connection with the anti-Hindu riots in Sindh province’s Ghotki town.
The Human Rights Commission of Pakistan has taken cognisance of the matter and raised concerns over the “outbreak of mob violence.”
Today, reports emerged that the incident of alleged blasphemy was linked to an earlier kidnapping and attempt to forcefully marry an underage Hindu girl. The activists said the allegations were made against the principal so that the abduction could be covered up. A news report in Pakistani media outlet Naya Daur stated that the attacks against the Hindu community were pre-planned by the goons of notorious Radical Islamic leader Mian Mithoo. Mian Mithoo is alleged to be behind the abduction and forced conversion of several Hindu underage girls in the area.
Pakistan is notoriously known for its persecution of not only religious minorities but also ethnic minorities within their own country. The forceful conversion programmes have often been unleashed against the minorities especially Christians, Sikhs and Hindus living in in the country with utmost brutality.