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Ahmadi Teacher In Peshawar Murdered In Cold Blood On International Teacher’s Day

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As the world marked International Teachers’ Day on Monday to honor education providers, in Pakistan an Ahmadi professor was gunned down on his way home in Peshawar.

The slain Prof Dr Naeemuddin Khattak was driving home after visiting his brother when two men on a motorcycle stopped his car and opened fire at him. He received five bullets and died on the spot. Mr. Khattak held a PhD in Zoology and was a faculty member at Government Superior Science College Peshawar. It has been reported that he had an argument over a religious issue with his alleged killer, which ended in the accused murdering him.

Violence against Ahmadi community is on the rise in Pakistan. Last month a 60-year-old Ahmadi man was gunned down in Peshawar.  Online campaigns against the community calling for their murder are also a common phenomenon. FIA and PTA that are quick to act against dissent and ‘vulgarity’ on social media turn a blind eye to this online bigotry.

The constitution of Pakistan guarantees all citizens protection and equal treatment under the law. Furthermore, Article 5 allows minorities the freedom to express and practice their religious beliefs. Faith-based killings targeting the minority communities are a stain on Pakistan’s human rights record.  Despite statements made by Prime Minister Imran Khan recently about the injustice being meted out to minority groups in Pakistan, no concrete action is taken to nab the perpetrators and those who incite violence against the religious minority groups.

Law enforcement authorities should take prompt action against the killing of Mr Khattak and others who are killed merely for practicing a belief different from the majority.

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Naya Daur