Pakistan: murder of Ahmadi blamed on TV hate speech

On 22 December a Pakistani morning TV show broadcast a discussion which included accusations that the Ahmadi community were responsible for the Peshawar massacre and were the enemy of Pakistan, and the common enemy of Muslims.

The TV company have subsequently apologised for this lapse, admitting their code of conduct was broken.

On 27 December, reported The Express Tribune, a 27-year-old leader of the Jamaat-i-Ahmadiyya (JA) was killed in Gujranwala, allegedly for his beliefs. Luqman Ahmad Shahzad was on the way to his farm from his home when he was shot in the head.

Two motives for his killing were suggested: Shahzad was the only Ahmadi in his family and his entire family had nursed a grudge against him for his conversion; there was also a possibility it had been prompted by his refusal to attend his cousin’s wedding because he had reservations about her marriage to a low-caste man.

The Reuter’s report of the murder linked it very clearly with the TV show, stating that “Saturday’s killing was the second time Hussain’s show has hosted religious leaders denouncing Ahmadis. In 2008, he hosted scholars who called for the Ahmadis to be killed. Within a day, two prominent Ahmadis had been shot dead.” They described Luqman Ahmad Shehzad as “the eleventh person killed for being Ahmadi in Pakistan this year.”