JUI-F welcomes 26 persons acquitted in Mashal lynching case

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JUI-F welcomes 26 persons acquitted in Mashal lynching case

The religious parties' activists, particularity JI's, also held a welcome ceremony for the acquitted accused on Thursday.

On February 8, members of several hard-line religious parties, including Jamaat-i Islami and Jamiat Ulema-i Islam, showered those acquitted with rose petals and labelled them as "heroes".

Muhammad Asif Khan, vice-chancellor of the University of Peshawar, told University World News: "We welcome the court verdict against the inhumane killing of an innocent student but all those spotted in a mobile phone video of the mob who lynched Mashal must be punished".

According to media reports, members of religious parties welcomed the release of 26 people acquitted by an anti-terrorism court in the murder of university student Mashal Khan.

Mulk said that those let off were allegedly eyewitnesses to the lynching of Mashal Khan and continue to claim that he (Mashal) had committed blasphemy.

Family members and relatives of suspects in a case regarding the lynching of 23-year-old university student Mohammad Mashal Khan gather outside a cent
Family members and relatives of suspects in a case regarding the lynching of 23-year-old university student Mohammad Mashal Khan gather outside a cent

At Haripur city jail where alleged murdered were kept provided high alert by police and elite force to the court.

JUI-F Mardan chapter leader Maulana Shujaul Mulk criticized the court for its verdict and said that the issue would not end here and strongly criticized the government.

Hundreds of the accused relatives had been waiting outside the prison cell when the final decision was made about the accused.

On Wednesday, the JUI-F and JI's workers had gathered at the Mardan Motorway Interchange and protested against the verdict given by an Anti-Terrorism Court (ATC) in the Mashal Khan murder case.

At least six of the acquitted reached Mardan on Wednesday night. The court gave death sentence to one person and life imprisonment to five others involved in the heinous crime. Talking to the media after the verdict, which was made public nearly a week after the completion of the court hearing, Mashal's brother Aimal Khan told the media, "all the accused deserved punishment as they all were part of the mob who killed my brother".

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