ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka’s cabinet of ministers have approved a grant of 2.5 million rupees to be paid to the family of Priyantha Kumara Diyawadana, the victim of a lynch mob in Pakistan on December 03.
The grant, proposed by the labour minister, will be provided to Diyawadana’s wife and children on a humanitarian basis by the Employees’ Welfare Fund of the Bureau of Foreign Employment, a cabinet statement said on Tuesday (07).
The grant is being paid considering Diyawadana’s “extensive contribution to the Sri Lankan economy over a period of eleven years as a migrant worker”, the statement said.
The 48-year-old was tortured, beaten and kicked to death by an angry mob in Sialkot, Punjab, egged on by hundreds. Among the attackers were workers at the factory where Diyawadana had been employed for years as a manger.
Diyawadana was attacked over an allegation of blasphemy, though doubts have been expressed by some sceptics – including his widow – who maintain that anyone who lived and worked in Pakistan for over a decade would have known better than to engage in behavior that could be deemed blasphemous.
Pakistan Prime Minister has ordered an investigation into the incident and promised swift justice, and already over 100 suspects have been arrested including a man named Imtiaz alias Bill who Punjab police said was the “most wanted accused” in the case.
Diyawadana’s remains were flown into Sri Lanka Monday (06) afternoon.
Meanwhile, co-cabinet spokesman Minister Ramesh Pathirana told reporters on Tuesday that “no hindrance” has been caused to diplomatic relations between Sri Lanka and Pakistan as a result of the incident.
“Prime Minister Imran Khan acted promptly. They have arrested about 130 suspects. They’re carrying out investigations. The government of Pakistan has promised that all legal means (sp) should be enacted to punish the wrongdoers,” he said. (Colombo/Dec07/2021)