“This is absurd,” Athar Minallah, a lawyer who campaigned for the restoration of Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry, said in a telephone interview. “No one can give justification for such an act. These handful of people have taken the population hostage, and the government is trying to patronize them. If the state surrenders, what will happen next?”
Asma Jahangir, one of the country’s leading rights activists, condemned the flogging as “intolerable.”
“This is an eye-opener,” she said in a televised news briefing in Lahore. “Terrorism has seeped into every corner of the country. It is time that every patriotic Pakistani should raise a voice against such atrocities.”
She said she would join other rights activists and citizens in a rally against terrorism on Saturday in Lahore, where militants stormed a police academy this week…
Jugnu Mohsin, a peace activist and publisher of Friday Times, the country’s most popular weekly newspaper, blamed the military for allowing the Taliban to gain strength and giving the militants a free hand to commit such atrocities.