Police in Pakistan say people attending a political rally in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province on Saturday beat a man to death because they believed he made blasphemous remarks.
Local police officer Iqbal Khan said Maulana Nigar Alam, 40, was killed because “Some words of his prayer were deemed blasphemous by a number of protestors, leading to torture and death at the hands of the angry mob.”
Police locked the man up in a shop to protect him, but the mob broke through the shop’s door.
Khan told Dawn, a Pakistani website, that Alam died during the attack in the northern city of Marden.
Blasphemy is a sensitive issue in predominantly Muslim Pakistan and is punishable by death.
Domestic and international rights groups say allegations of blasphemy are enough to cause mob attacks and the killing of the accused. Blasphemy laws are also sometimes used to settle personal vendettas and disputes and intimidate religious minorities in Pakistan.
Ayaz Gul contributed to this report from Islamabad. Some information was provided by the Associated Press.