21 January, 2022

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Appalling Killing Of Priyantha Kumara: Shamed Humanity; Not Just Pakistan!

By Mohamed Harees –

Lukman Harees

“A society with lynch culture needs a big zoo, not for the animals definitely, but for the very people themselves!” ~ Mehmet Murat ildan

What happened in Pakistan few days ago, was inexcusable and a terrible tragedy. The nation was shocked and devastated by the distressing news of Priyantha Kumara, a Sri Lankan factory manager working in Sialkot, Punjab, Pakistan being set upon, lynched, killed in barbaric and inhumane manner and body torched by a set of insane psychopaths, allegedly blinded by hate and extremism. This awful news about this lynching episode broke the heart of not just Sri Lankans; it was also widely condemned by Pakistan’s military and political leadership, prominent social and religious figures ,the civil society as well as the world at large. It not only shamed Pakistan; it also reflected a failure of humanity as a whole as well. Our sincere condolences go to the family of this innocent victim.

In general Sri Lankans are held in high regard in Pakistan. The relationship between the Sri Lankan security forces and the Pakistanis is very close, and it has time and time again proved to be a friend in need. Thus, according to social analysts, this was not an attack directed at Sri Lankans or Sinhala/ Buddhists in particular. Similar mobs have attacked innocent Pakistanis before. Kumara was thus not killed because he was a Sri Lankan or a Sinhala Buddhist. He died as any other person living in that country would have, if there was a hysterically murderous crowd bent on harming someone at that time for whatever reason.

Initial prima facie investigations revealed that the incident was a case of enraged religious extremists committing this crime on grounds of blasphemy, but there are other conspiracy theories too floating around , including office issues and the involvement of a third country. In fact, some social media activists on Reddit have commented that the so-called poster incident bordering on blasphemy never happened and that Kumara was targeted for another issue that investigators are yet to reveal. That claim is yet to be confirmed. Be it as it may, the fact remains that this sad episode is not forgivable, condonable or justifiable by any standards. Tahir Mehmood Ashrafi, Prime Minister Imran Khan’s special representative on religious harmony said “Ulema(theologians) of all sects have condemned the killing. This is a test case. We ask for forgiveness from the people of Sri Lanka and the victim’s family.” PM Imran Khan too tweeted: ‘The horrific vigilante attack on factory in Sialkot & the burning alive of Sri Lankan manager is a day of shame for Pakistan. ‘I am overseeing the investigations and let there be no mistake all those responsible will be punished with full severity of the law. Many arrests have been made are in progress.’. Admiringly, a man called Malik Adnan was to be awarded a Hero’s medal for his moral courage and bravery for trying to shelter Priyantha from his attackers, endangering his own life.

Back in Sri Lanka, his grieving wife has pleaded for justice for her slain husband from both Pakistani and Sri Lankan leaders. We all join in reiterating her call for justice and that all perpetrators of this horrific crime be brought to justice. Due compensation should be paid to the victim’s family too. PM Khan has unequivocally assured that justice will be done and the Sri Lankan people hope that impunity will not be case.. Already around 230 arrests have been made and main culprits are already in custody and measures are said to be in progress to sue and punish those responsible. Pakistan owes it to their Sri Lankan brethren as well as to the world at large to show in deed that their assurance and resolve to ensure justice will be a reality.

PM Khan has also a greater responsibility to fight the increasing religious extremism in his country; a subject which has been causing havoc in Pakistan. This incident highlights the issues that Pakistan is facing in its struggle with extremists and fundamentalists. Amnesty International said it is deeply alarmed by the “disturbing lynching” and killing of Kumara due to alleged blasphemy.Also as writer Asif Hussein says , ‘Blasphemy Law of Pakistan has nothing to do with Islam, but was the creation of Zia Ul Haq who bred the most virulent form of extremism the world has ever seen and which that once beautiful country still continues to suffer with mob rule being the order of the day’. Besides., it has been used frequently as a tool to spread anti-Muslim hatred by the powerful Islamophobia industry. It is heartening to note that many front line Muslim organizations both in Sri Lanka and beyond have not only severely condemned this un-Islamic act, but also joined the call for justice for the aggrieved.

Sri Lankans are well accustomed with impunity and religious extremism. They know what it was it like to allow the culprits who commit hate crimes to go scot-free and to make some sections of the people immune to crimes. They know quite well how impunity has been a curse to the body public and how law works in favour of and unofficially grants immunity to certain categories of people -politicians, those in saffron clothing and even law enforcement authorities themselves. They have lived through the 1983 pogroms against the Tamils where their neighbours and relatives were set upon and murdered in broad daylight in the presence of law enforcement authorities, because overnight, they were perceived to be enemies. They saw how a hate rabid monk Gnanasara (Thero) incited mobs and made them to destroy neighbourhoods, businesses and people. They knew how mobs incited by local politicians attacked their Muslim neighbours in Digana and in North Western province, just a few years ago. A young Muslim man was burnt alive in Digana when petrol bombs were thrown into his house, and he could not escape. No-one was prosecuted for any of these crimes In fact, the hate Thero was rewarded in contrast making him the Chair of ‘One country -One law’ commission -a comical development indeed. Sadly, people have been politically manipulated to hate their neighbours – Tamils, and the Muslims, by petty political leaders, time and time again., at different times.

There was also the cases of law delays in bringing justice to foreigners too . Example in our recent memory was a Briton Khuram Shaikh Zaman who was murdered and his Russian girlfriend gang raped on the Christmas Day 2011, in a resort in Tangalle. The trial of the guilty was delayed for over two years amid allegations of interference because of the culprit’s political connections. This case showcased the widespread lawlessness in the country fuelled by political meddling with the judiciary. Them Sirisena caused outrage by pardoning a death row Army criminal who murdered a Swedish teenager in 2005. To Muslims in particularly, the burning of Priyantha’s body brings them m=nightmares and ugly memories of their Covid bodies being mercilessly cremated on racist grounds, despite lack of evidence both medical and public health. This is the reason why Sri Lankans hope that Pakistan’s assurance to bring justice will be a reality.

Mob lynching is a crime against humanity and generally the fundamental principles of the law of the land. It is a flagrant violation of the constitutional rights guaranteed in many countries. Moreover, since lynching is targeted against a particular identity and discriminates the whole community, thereby violating the mandate of non-discrimination.

Even for many of us living and growing up in the West in the 20th and 21st centuries, the threat of lynching has unfortunately become commonplace. The popular images of an angry white mob stringing blacks in America was only half the story. Lynching, an act of terror meant to spread fear among blacks, served the broad social purpose of maintaining white supremacy in the economic, social and political spheres. Lynchings were frequently committed with the most flagrant public display. Like executions by guillotine in medieval times, lynchings were often advertised in newspapers and drew large crowds of white families. They were a kind of vigilantism where Southern white men saw themselves as protectors of their way of life and their white women. By the early 20th century, the writer Mark Twain had a name for it: the United States of Lyncherdom. Lynching was covered in local newspapers with headlines spelling out the horrific details. In Occupied Palestine too, lynching by Zionist Israeli is commonplace.

Closer home, not just Pakistan, the incidents of mob lynching in India have specifically received global condemnation. In particular, the United States Commission on International Religious Freedom [“USCIRF”] has released many statements condemning the lynching of Muslims and Christians. Lack of accountability only encouraged those RSs gangs who believed they can target religious minorities with impunity. Consequently, per UNCIRF’s recent report, India has been placed in Tier 2 for engaging in religious tolerance violations. There has been a rise in the number of incidents of cow vigilantism since the election of a Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) majority in the Parliament of India in 2014. The frequency and severity of cow vigilante violence has been described as “unprecedented”. This has posed a serious question as to the reality of India’s secularity. In fact, Modi’s government only gave extraneous or rhetoric justifications for their failure to act against these vigilantes.

As Amnesty International says about appalling lynching of Priyantha, “(Pakistani)Authorities must immediately conduct an independent, impartial and prompt investigation and hold the perpetrators accountable. Today’s event underscores the urgency with which an environment that enables abuse and puts lives at risk must be rectified”. The survival of Pakistan depends on making its citizens humane and peaceful.

True, people are becoming helpless in front of ignorant and religious fanatics as in Sri Lanka when rulers use them as political tools. Political and religious leaders as well as security establishment should learn from this tragedy and endeavour for a liberal and secular Pakistan. As Imthiaz Bakeer Markar says, we need to fight extremism in a world where extremist thought is both growing and is profitable for those in power. Extremism is growing because idiocy is growing and intelligence is declining with time. This would also have serious implications for democracy as we know it.

In the greater context of larger historical trajectory of sectarian violence in the South Asian region, and the role of the rising majoritarian state ideology in facilitating and celebrating sectarian hostilities, it is important to understand the social and personal harms of mass violence and the phenomenon of lynching. This calls into focus the contentious question of legal reforms needed for ending impunity in hate crime cases. Specifically, it is noted the problem of state complicity in violence and the failed attempts to legislate and implement anti-communal violence laws. Then there is also the protracted challenges of building viable strategies of litigation in the aftermath of sectarian violence and also failure to fight impunity too.

What should move us to action is human dignity: the inalienable dignity of the oppressed, but also the dignity of each of us. We lose dignity if we tolerate the intolerable.” – Baltasar Gracian.

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Latest comments

  • 17
    13

    Lynching seems part of the culture of many societies.
    Colour, caste, race and religion have been excuses for such brutality.
    We seem agitated because the victim is one of us.
    Without taking anything away from the criminality and inhumanity of the act, let us ask ourselves whether we have shown a fraction of this concern on other occasions, here and abroad.

    • 8
      0

      Dear Mr Harees,

      Let s hope not that lot more humans would be attacked in the aftermath of this brutal incident – as is the case of our ” easter sunday bomb blast” in 21 April 2019.

      Where on earth – people would join to celebrate when a human being is publicly tortured and lynched to the manner our eyes could not believe it. ————— if anyone society woudl promote such mlechcha acts,———- can we ever call them as human beings ?
      .
      This is th ereason why I always call human beings are no different to ” thirisannu” where the proper law and order is failing.
      :
      The reality is the literacy rate in Pakistan is 40% – PEOPLE WOULD BEHAVE LIKE ANIMALS – no doubt abou tthat.
      :
      Thanks to FREE EDUCATION in our island, even if whole lot of our peoples are becoming prey of the political crooks, however the levels in our country are not that dangerous as is the case in today s Pakistan

      • 4
        6

        Facebook Whistlebower, Frances Haugen, exposed how social Media is being used by external actors to spread ethnic and religious violence in Myanmar and Ethiopea.The CIA which has its operatives all over South Asia is stoking a Muslim-Buddhist “Clash of Civilizations” all over Southeast Asia region. The Killing of a Sri Lankan in Pakistan must be read in this wider GEOPOLITICAL CONTEXT.
        The current media frenzy, particularly Social Media about the sad fate of Priyantha Kumara and the bringing of his body to Sri Lanka is very much like the stories that circulated in 1983 after the LTTE killed 13 solders in Jaffna or the stories after the Easter attacks that Muslim women were buying white cloths to attack Buddhist temples!

        • 5
          7

          The plan is to promote attacks on Muslims and create chaos in Sri Lanka and beyond in South Asia…The CIA badly wants a Buddhist-Muslim “clash of civilizations” in South and Southeast Asia to de-stabilize the region and destroy the Rise of Asia led by China as the Growth Hub of the World!
          US citizens, Goat and Basil Rajapaksa are also part of the CIA’s Weaponization of the Sinhala Buddhist Diaspora, and ethno-religious identity politics in Sri Lanka and beyond, along with their BBS friends to enable the Buddhist-Muslim clash of Civilizations in Sri Lanka and to spread to Southeast Asia, particularly Myanmar and Thailand… CIA has used “terrorist” discourses to weaponize religions in the Mideast and North Africa, to DIVIDE, DISTRACT, LOOT and COLONIZE Africa –the wealthiest continent on the planet. So, Please read the book: “Cold War Monks: Buddhism and America’s Secret Strategy in Southeast Asia”. Now CIA and its Saudi Wahabi Salafi partners are working together on the Buddhist and Muslims Diaspora networks to de-stablize the region… the Cold War and Third World Cyber War – Full Sperum Domination (FSD) agianst Asia’s economic Rise by the US and its White Anglo-Saxon EU friends is on to Make America Great Again! This will not succeed!

        • 12
          5

          D
          “…the stories that circulated in 1983 after the LTTE killed 13 solders in Jaffna or the stories after the Easter attacks that Muslim women were buying white cloths to attack Buddhist temples!”
          What was notoriously bad was that nothing was said by anyone about what the local Tamil population suffered at the hands of the armed forces and what Muslims in certain areas suffered at the hands of racist gangs.

      • 13
        1

        Two latest news from Pakistan:
        Pakistan foreign minister has defended the act as due to emotional outburst to provocation.
        People have surrounded a prison in north west Pakistan and demanded that a person being held there for blasphemy to be handed to them for killing and when they refused had set the local police station on fire.
        Religious hatred is inborn and widespread in Pakistan more than other Islamic countries. Every religion is blasphemous to other religion, but there should be something wrong, as we hear of blasphemy charge only in Muslim countries.
        Recently Muslim mobs in Bangladesh killed five Hindus, damaged their houses, shops and vehicles and destroyed Hindu temples on Blasphemy charge. When extremists were asked why they did ti, they said that they are acting according to instruction in Koran.

    • 13
      2

      Once upon a time there was a certain ruggerite. His bones were first broken with a thorough thrashing and some serious torture. He was then thrown into his car and set on fire while alive. There are some similarities. Nothing heard of the prosecution of the culprits now.

      • 12
        2

        There were several Tamils who were murdered and burnt by Sinhala mobs, but no action was taken to punish the perpetrators or to compensate the victims. First such act took place in Panadura during 1958 riots when Brahmin priest was burned alive inside the temple. Again at the end of the war in 2009, Tamils who were lying injured and those who surrendered were killed and their bodies incinerated and dissolved in Sulphuric acid to cover up evidence.

    • 6
      6

      SJ,
      You have a point . Our outrage is very often selective, to say the least. For example, Buddhists in Bangladesh but not Muslim poets here. There were even protests against Pakistani refugees (who were actually Christians).

    • 2
      1

      Well said SJ.

      Tamils in the island of Sri Lanka faced repeated mass killings in 1958, 1977, and 1983 and the mass killings in 2009 prompted UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon to appoint a Panel of Experts to report on the scale of the killings.

      According to UN internal review report on Sri Lanka, over 70 thousand Tamils were killed in six months in early 2009 and Tamil women were sexually assaulted and raped by the Sri Lankan Security forces.

      International Truth and Justice Project (ITJP) in February 2017 handed over details to UN of Sri Lankan Military run “Rape Camps”, where Tamil women are being held as “sex slaves”. Also, According to UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office report on April 2013, there are over 90 thousand Tamil war widows in Sri Lanka.

      Thousands of Tamils disappeared, including babies and children. UN Working Group on Enforced Disappearances stated in 2020 that the second highest number of enforced disappearance cases in the world is from Sri Lanka.

      According to this UN report, the killings and other abuses that took place amount to war crimes and crimes against humanity. Independent experts believe that there are elements of these abuses that constitute an act of genocide.

  • 22
    5

    Purpose of this article is to downplay the Islamic dimension of the event highlighting that such things have happened in Sri Lanka and religious extremism exists in Sri Lanka too.
    .
    The point these guys don’t understand is large numbers cheered the spectacle.
    .
    I know what goes behind every Muslim’s mind : IF this man desecrated our Prophet (PBUH) CONSCIOULY that serves him right, but not in this shameful manner while the rest of world is looking on.

    -Soma

    • 14
      18

      Soma,
      “The point these guys don’t understand is large numbers cheered the spectacle.”
      I believe large numbers cheered the spectacle ( or didn’t object strongly enough) in 1958, 1971, 1983, 1989, to name a few instances. Now, don’t tell me that had nothing to do with Buddhism.
      .Extremists exist in EVERY religion. ALL religions have extremist writings in their sacred texts. The perpetrators have to be punished, not the religion.

      • 19
        2

        It is wrong to say that all religions have extremist writings in their sacred texts. Jainism and Buddhism are the most pacific religions with no extremism. What is happening in Buddhist countries is due to their nationalism, bringing disrepute to the religion. In Sri Lanka it is Mahavamsa that is inciting hatred and violence against Tamils. There were no other ethnic groups at that time to attack. It is old testament that called non-believers as infidels and promoted revenge (Eye for eye and tooth for tooth), which has been adopted by Islam, which went further inciting violence against non-believers to kill them and destroy their places of worship. Jesus Christ took exception to this and said “If someone slaps you show him the other cheek”. What European Christians did was completely out of the teachings of Jesus Christ. Thiruvalluvar the world famous Tamil poet, went a step better to say that best thing to hate a person who has done harm to you is to do good to him. Can you show any extremist writing in Hindu texts. Originally there was no caste system in Hinduism, which was introduced by immigrant Aryans. There is nothing in Hinduism which asks people to be segregated and ill treated. Sikhism is a militant religion advocating self defence, but does not promote extremism.

        • 3
          7

          Dr.G,
          “It is wrong to say that all religions have extremist writings in their sacred texts.”
          Perhaps you have never heard of the ancient Hindu practice of Sati, where a widow had to burn herself on here husband’s funeral pyre?
          I repeat, ALL religions have extremism built in. The difference is the degree to which it becomes mainstream. In Islam, it is much more mainstream.

          • 7
            2

            “Perhaps you have never heard of the ancient Hindu practice of Sati,”

            This was social practice than religion and not widespread as the English / British trumpeted.

            It was mainly in what is now Hindian communities Sati took place.

            Remember the arsehole called Raman and his slut Seethai. Yet, he wanted to check whether the slut was tainted or not.

            There is no Saiva religious text that imposes such practices.

      • 3
        1

        Old codger
        Remember those glory days when you guys were clapping and cheering while watching LTTE videos circulating among the support groups ? LTTE recorderd every event of their heroic acts with footage of gruesome torturing of captured soldiers and scattered pieces of human remains after bomb blasts. Remember they had assigned a cameraman for recording the blasting of Rajiv Gandhi which even helped idenfy those involved?

        Soma

        • 3
          1

          Soma,
          Were you cheering in 1971 and 1989 then?

        • 0
          0

          Soma I guess you forgot to switch on the camera during annual pogrom, while you were at it

    • 14
      2

      soma,
      .
      For once I have to agree with you.
      .
      Lukman Harees, I’m disappointed with this article; even with old codger’s riposte.
      .
      Let us focus on this incident, not allowing anybody to excuse what happened by comparing with other incidents, other ages. I make many comments. Please pin-point one in which I have defended Israeli cruelty towards the Palestinians. Do that, we can then continue this discussion.
      .
      I’ve found the first video that Loy Machedo made on this subject. I commented on it three days ago.
      .
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=USSnfINinRU
      .
      In the second, find below Ameer Ali’s article, his anger appears to have grown, but in none does he force our eyes to literally focus on gruesome scenes.
      .
      Lukman Harees, you’re a good man; please don’t make excuses for these horrors, or for Imran Khan because of his cricketing greatness, his accent, or his looks. We know what horrors he and Biden permitted in Afghanistan this year.
      .
      Lastly, see how I unflinchingly stood up when faced with wrong-doing within my own community:
      .
      https://www.colombotelegraph.com/index.php/church-of-ceylon-anglican-democracy-choosing-the-best-to-be-put-over-us/
      .
      Find something to criticise in those places; then turn on me.
      .
      Panini Edirisinhe of Bandarawela

      • 2
        5

        S.M,
        Do not trust Indians talking about Pakistan or China, or Chinese talking about India. Also, Evangelicals on Catholics, or vice versa. Or Buddhists talking about Muslims. Nobody has a monopoly on evil. You are old enough not to be taken in by crying crocodiles, aren’t you?

    • 1
      2

      Soma,

      Do you really want to share the same nation with this type of people?

      I do not.

      Be sensible and fair. Give them their own nations and Sinhalas must have their own.

      Fair and just for all. No more terrorism. No more war crimes. No more riots. No more extremism. No more human rights abuses. No more military rapes. No more UNHRC drama. No more discrimination.

    • 1
      0

      Soma,
      It happened/happeneing in Sri Lanka as well.
      1983 visit this tinyurl.com/cfkthjpu

      • 1
        0

        Soma
        Mass killings in Sri Lanka https://tinyurl.com/mrxxw6h8

        • 2
          1

          Anpu
          Remember those glory days when you guys were clapping and cheering while watching LTTE videos circulating among the support groups ? LTTE recorderd every event of their heroic acts with footage of gruesome torturing of captured soldiers and scattered pieces of human remains after bomb blasts. Remember they had assigned a cameraman for recording the blasting of Rajiv Gandhi which even helped idenfy those involved?

          Soma

          • 1
            0

            Soma,
            “when ****you**** guys were clapping” – how did you know?
            “Without the Sinhala Only, the Tiger may have remained unborn. Without the Black July, the Tiger may not have grown exponentially. If the B-C Pact and the D-C Pact did not miscarry (thanks to the midwifery of Sinhala extremism), the LTTE, even if it was born, would have remained a fringe group.” Tisaranee Gunasekara

            Were you clapping when this happened? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UjaryPt16fk

            • 0
              1

              Anpu
              What does Thisaranee Gunasekara know about Dravidian separatist movement in India?
              Vadukodai resolution would have gestated, Sinhala only or not, Vadukodai resolution is the logical precursor of war.
              .
              Lot of water flowed under the bridge and ‘IF’ in history can be debated till cows come home.
              .
              Let us move forward with the EXISTING demographic distribution.

              Soma

              • 2
                0

                Soma,
                Cant you stick to what we are talking about?

                I am sure Thisaranee Gunasekara knows much more than you.

  • 17
    3

    How about the Easter Sunday attack that killed 260 people?

    How about the 2008 shooting at the SL cricket team in Pakistan?

    How about killing the Israeli Olympics team in 1972?

    How about 9/11?

    How about 3/11?

    How about 7/7?

    • 1
      0

      The Tigers were horrible people, and caused many innocent people to be slaughtered.
      .
      None of us liked them, but let’s get this clear. They became powerful because they were pursuing certain political goals. On my analysis, they had political goals because they thought that we, Sinhalese, had treated the “Jaffna Tamils” unfairly (the fact is that the Up-country Tamils were treated even worse, and that included the treatment that they received even from the “Ceylon Tamils”) What a complex mess.
      .
      However, they did have a political goal. The method that they hit upon was to kill indiscriminately, even a few Tamils may have been blown up by their bombs. What they did was wrong.

      The killing of Priyantha Kumara was very different. Please see the videos by that Indian, “Loy Machedo”.

      • 1
        0

        Dear Sinhala_Man,
        The single-minded determination to wipe out The Tigers without any proper analysis or understanding as to why they surfaced turned out to be counterproductive.
        .
        The Tigers, in turn, went from being rebellious to being the horrible people, for their own survival.
        .
        Even if a minute degree of the outrage that is being displayed against the Pakistani mob mentality would have been demonstrated by the very same exponents of religious virtue at the time of LTTE showing up its ugly head, it would have been dead on arrival!

    • 0
      4

      GATAM

      Why no how about.The historical evidence

      Myanmar
      Demolition mosque in india
      Shooting incident in newzeland mosque

      All sides have problem what needed is not kerosine to the fire to Caution is needed.
      Not fuel a problem

  • 6
    12

    There are religious fanatics and extremists in most religions, especially among the leading religions in the world, and they unfortunately bring their religion a bad name by their violent behavior. Whether for religious or political reasons, the violence against innocent lives is horrible, and it is up to the leaders in the country to rein them in, control them, and give them harsh sentences.

    Religious extremism should not be tolerated, and leaders who use these ignorant, backward, uneducated thugs, for their political agendas, are equally guilty of their crimes.

    “Christian terrorist who mowed down Muslim family ‘was laughing’ as he got out of blood covered truck
    Killer is said to have told taxi driver to film his arrest”. The Independent

    “An ultra-Orthodox Jewish man who had recently been released from prison after serving 10 years for stabbing participants in the annual Gay Pride Parade here in 2005 struck again Thursday, stabbing six marchers in this year’s parade, according to the police”. BBC

    • 3
      14

      Cont.
      ““Dara Singh (né Rabindra Kumar Pal; born 2 October 1962) is a serial killer, a Bajrang Dal activist and a member of the Bharatiya Janata Party.[10] He shot into limelight after he was convicted for leading a mob and setting fire to the Station wagon in which the Australian Christian missionary Graham Staines and his two children were sleeping, which burned them alive, in Orissa.[11][12]
      Singh was also charged in the murder of Muslim trader Shaikh Rehman, he chopped off his arms before setting him ablaze at Padibeda village in Karanjia sub-division of Mayurbhanj district.[13] He was also convicted in the murder of a Christian priest, Fr. Arul Das, in Jamboni village in the same district. The priest was killed by an arrow during his escape, after his church was set on fire.”
      “At least three people have been killed and 52 injured after Buddhist mobs rampaged through Muslim areas in southwest Sri Lanka, police say.”
      As for Muslim extremists we have seen the violence they are capable of in the form of Al Qaeda and ISIS, and they have also killed thousands of their own in sectarian violence.
      “The outbreak of religious violence followed a large rally Sunday by the Bodu Bala Sena, a hardline Buddhist nationalist group led by monks, in the town of Aluthgama, about 60 kilometers south of Colombo”. CNN
      There is something horribly wrong when people kill innocent people in the name of their religion. Any nation that encourages extremism by doing and saying nothing to halt the violence against the minority must face international condemnation.

    • 13
      2

      No, Ashan, I strongly disagree.
      .
      This deed has been done in the name of religion.
      .
      I will accept the denunciation of these actions when Muslims denounce all this unequivocally.
      .
      Ashan, you’re not a Muslim. It’s not your business to look for reasons to excuse what should not have happened.

      • 0
        3

        You seem to have a problem with reading and comprehension.

        “Whether for religious or political reasons, the violence against innocent lives is horrible, and it is up to the leaders in the country to rein them in, control them, and give them harsh sentences.”

        “There is something horribly wrong when people kill innocent people in the name of their religion. “

        • 0
          0

          Ashan,
          .
          I admit that my comment was rather irrational.
          .
          Reason:
          .
          Your comment was long and I focused on the first bit, which seemed to be excusing Sialkot because horrible things have happened elsewhere.
          .
          However, I have read more carefully and ask you to forgive me.
          .
          Panini Edirisinhe- retired teacher of English.

  • 5
    4

    We are all appalled & outraged by this barbaric murder but would it happen in SL if someone is considered to be disrespecting Buddhism?

    A tourist, as a practising Buddhist, had a tattoo of the Buddha, for which, was thrown in jail & deported. It is common to have a tattoo of Jesus as an indication of faith in the Western world but unacceptable in SL. In a country of petty minded Buddhists, I won’t be surprised of the same outcome in similar circumstances.

  • 8
    3

    I understand why the Muslim writers are giving priority to this murder because this incident may turn against Muslims in this country.

    • 0
      2

      Mr. Ajith, I think you are totally wrong. This act is humanity, not because of expected backslash, and to turn down all kinds violent acts of this nature.

  • 2
    5

    Extreme religions are in SL too that resort to this type of violence.

    In 2009 July a mosque in Beruwala was attacked and 3 persons were chopped to death. 20 others were injured.
    Then in April 2019 over 250 innocents were slaughtered.

    This is a worldwide thing.

    Only solution is the separate the 3 ethnic tribes in SL by creating 3 mono ethnic nations. There will be permanent peace.

    The shared model failed.

    One island, 3 nations please.

    • 3
      2

      Mr 1 island 3 nations
      1 map please.

  • 7
    0

    I too feel sad and extremely angry about this insensible gruesome savage act. But lets not deny many Priyantha’s were lynched, raped and killed by our own Lankans. Many of those lynch mobs were directed and lead by Monks,politicians and the Government. There were policemen who turned spectators or worse enablers. Let us condemn these racial, religious bigotry without hypocrisy. Remember it is we who had two insurrections and thirty years of war (yet lessons unlearned) where millions were killed. To my knowledge , Lankan history it self is peppered with such violence before and after independence. Does monks leading lynch mobs appear any better than a mass lynching and taking selfies ??? During Black July I lost a friend and his father, who were burned alive inside a car, they were travelling. So lets not pretend innocence.

    • 0
      4

      “Lankan history it self is peppered with such violence before and after independence.”
      *
      “…peppered with such violence before …”?
      That is a bit too much of the spice.

      • 4
        0

        It is Szechuan Pepper, drink plenty water, when feel better take a look at Cambridge, Collins and Merriam Webster.

        • 0
          4

          Spicing is delicate business.
          When overdone, it yields unpalatable results.
          *
          How much water have you consumed since?

          • 4
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            How much of fa *rting have you done since

  • 3
    2

    We have had our share of violence against the minority too. We have had crazy mobs attack Muslims and Christians, and people were also killed. We have had terrorists in saffron robes lead the mobs by making hate speeches and turning their supporters into a bunch of haters who kill, loot, burn, and destroy.

    “Hours after the attacks in Kurunegala on Monday, reports of similar incidents of violence emerged from Gampaha district, less than 30 km from Colombo. Earlier, on Sunday, Chilaw town near Colombo had witnessed dozens pelting mosques and Muslim-owned stores with stones, and a local man being beaten by a mob, prompting a police curfew.

    In the wake of the ghastly Easter blasts, Muslim political leaders and activists — who vehemently condemned the attacks — had flagged the possibility of a backlash targeting the community.

    Condemning Monday’s spate of violence, Speaker Karu Jayasuriya said: “There is no difference between such racists trying to set our country on fire and the suicide bombers who detonated themselves.”

    Killing in the name of any religion, is not only wrong, but the biggest sin. No religion condones the killing of innocent people.

    • 5
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      What more Ashan ?? .Leader of such lynch squads is now heading one man one country one law.

  • 2
    0

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  • 2
    0

    RIP Priyantha.
    Thank you Mr Harees.
    I feel very sad and my thoughts are with his family and friends. We cant get over these things very easily.

  • 1
    4

    There are thousands of Pakistanis demonstrating against this killing. Nobody talks of that. Everybody is occupied in trying to stigmatize Pakistan and Islam. This killing has absolutely nothing to do with Islam, but everything to do with fundamentalism. Fundamentalists always react violently. Pakistan has a huge progressive population, who think in a balanced way. The areas where Taliban has infiltrated and spread their hate is where there is trouble of this sort. And everybody knows how Taliban came into being and who sponsored them, and what trouble Pakistan has had with the Taliban. Ulema(theologians) must know that most Srilankans have forgiven this act, even the family of Priyantha do not bear any grudge against Pakistan. Pakistani authorities have arrested people responsible for the killing (unlike in certain places, including here, where victims of mob violence almost never get any justice). The lone Pakistani boy trying to save Priyantha shows that there are very courageous and good Muslims in that area near the border too. Pakistan has been a victim of US interference, aggression and destabilization for a long time and due to US invasion of Afghanistan this whole area has been destablized and Taliban elements have got into Pakistan.

    • 5
      1

      PP,
      “Pakistani authorities have arrested people responsible for the killing (unlike in certain places, including here, where victims of mob violence almost never get any justice”
      So unlike your usual rants. Have you discovered marijuana?

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