The wife of a Sri Lankan national who was lynched to death by a mob in Sialkot pleads for justice from PM Imran Khan during a memorial event held by Islamabad’s mission in Colombo.
Priyantha Kumara, 48, was a general manager at a sports apparel factory in Sialkot. He was attacked by a mob of hundreds of people, dragged into the street, and set ablaze on Dec 3. Police said workers at the factory accused him of desecrating religious posters.
Dozens of people have been arrested in connection with the violence. Meanwhile, Prime Minister Imran Khan has promised severe punishment for those found guilty.
The memorial event was organized by Pakistan’s high commissioner Umar Farooq Burki on Thursday evening. It saw in attendance the highest-ranking Sri Lankan officials. It included the speaker of parliament, ministers, lawmakers, as well as Buddhist and Muslim religious figures.
Kumara’s widow, Nilushi Dissanayaka, arrived with the two sons who survived him. “I request Imran Khan to bring justice to my husband and punish the culprits as soon as possible. This is not to take revenge. But this should not happen to anyone in the future,” she said.
“I thank all the Pakistanis who supported me in this difficult situation and all staff of the high commission for arranging this event,” she added. “Also, I would like to thank the Sri Lankan president, prime minister, other ministers, and media institutions for supporting me.”
Funds raised to transfer to the widow
The business community in Sialkot has raised $100,000 for Kumara’s family. Rajco Industries, where Kumara worked, has pledged to take care of their financial needs by sending a monthly salary of $2,000 for the next 10 years.
The Pakistani high commissioner said the funds were transferred to the widow earlier this week. He added that around $54,000 has also been collected for the family by Pakistani expatriates in the US and Canada.
“Each and every person in Pakistan from the Prime Minister Imran Khan to a common man on the street was aggrieved and strongly condemned this inhumane act,” Burki said.
Pakistani authorities last month announced that suspects in the case will be presented before an anti-terrorism court in jail. “On strict directions of the prime minister of Pakistan, the trial of the murderers and abettors is going on a daily basis,” Burki said. “The prime minister is directly supervising the proceedings of this trial.”
Maulana Tariq Jameel and Prime Minister’s Special Representative on Religious Harmony Maulana Tahir Mehmood Ashrafi visited the Sri Lankan High Commission last month to convey their condolences over the Sialkot tragedy.
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