Karachi Police detain 27 cellphone company staff after violent protest over alleged blasphemy

Karachi, Jul 1 (IANS): The police in Karachi detained 27 employees of a mobile phone company on Friday following a violent protest by a mob over alleged blasphemy, media reports said.

A spokesperson for the Karachi South police said in a statement that the SHO of Preedy police station received information at around 11 am that a 'WiFi device' had been installed at the Star City Mall which allegedly played comments against the Holy Prophet's companions, Dawn reported.

Witnesses at the site told Dawn.com that the protesters, who had gathered at the site, damaged signboards at the mall, resulting in the closure of the mobile phone market, Dawn reported.

"Realising the gravity of the matter, the SHO rushed to the spot, got the device shut, and seized it," the statement said, adding that 27 employees of a private company were also detained.

The spokesperson said an inquiry committee led by the Saddar SP has been constituted to investigate the matter and if anyone is found involved in blasphemy, strict legal action would be taken against them.

Meanwhile, South SSP, Asad Raza, told Dawn.com that the police are trying to ascertain, with the help of the Federal Investigation Agency's (FIA) CyberCrime Wing, who all were responsible for installing the device.

"Twenty-seven men [from] Samsung office have been detained and an inquiry is underway," he added, Dawn reported.

For its part, Samsung Pakistan issued a statement saying the company maintained neutrality on religious sentiments.

"Samsung Electronics has reiterated its firm stance that it endeavours to maintain objectivity on all matters of religious significance... With reference to the recent developments in Karachi, Samsung Electronics stands firm on its stance that the company has utmost respect for all religious sentiments and beliefs and holds the religion of Islam in utmost respect."

The company also said that it has "immediately" started an internal investigations into the matter, Dawn reported.



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Title: Karachi Police detain 27 cellphone company staff after violent protest over alleged blasphemy

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