ISLAMABAD: Pakistan Army deployed troops on the streets of the capital Sunday after thousands of stone-throwing supporters of Mumtaz Qadri who was hanged last month clashed with police in chaotic scenes
Qadri was executed on February 29 for killing a Punjab governor over his call for blasphemy reform in what analysts said was a “key moment” in Pakistan’s long battle against religious extremism.
An estimated 25,000 supporters of the former police bodyguard gathered in Islamabad’s twin city Rawalpindi in the afternoon to offer prayers, before turning toward the heavily-barricaded capital, which was patrolled by hundreds of police and paramilitary soldiers.
Riot police carrying batons and shields fired tear gas to try to prevent them pushing closer to the city centre. Some protesters set fire to a container while chanting slogans.