A fake spiritual healer has been arrested in Pakistan for allegedly killing a follower after promising that he could perform a “miracle” by bringing him back to life.
Muhammad Sabir, a pir of village Mubarakabad in Bahawalnagar, was arrested on Wednesday from Multan, according to a Saddar police spokesman.
Over the past five years, the pir became popular among the villagers for his ability to perform these “miracles.”
The pir claimed earlier this week that he could bring a dead man back to life, but the victim must be married and have children, the Express Tribune reports.
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Muhammad Niaz, 40, a daily wage worker and father of six, volunteered to die.
Niaz was put on a table in a square with his hands and legs tied, and then Sabir cut his throat as bystanders looked on in amazement.
Police were called to the scene but by the time they arrived, Niaz had died.
Witnesses say Sabir spoke some words to bring him back from the dead, but when he realized his “miracle” didn’t work, he attempted to flee.
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He was subdued by villagers and handed over to the police, who were told that the pir also used to sacrifice animals and pour their blood on his followers to shield them from evil spirits or black magic.
A complaint against the cleric was lodged with the police in Saddar. The victim’s body was taken to a hospital for autopsy and later released to the family for burial.
Samina, sister of the victim, told The Express Tribune, that her brother had sacrificed himself for the spiritual leader.
“Why should I mourn when I know that my brother is in heaven?” she said. “He will be rewarded for his services for the spiritual leader in afterlife.
Samina said the pir should not have been punished because her brother had volunteered for the miracle.
According to Patheos, Sufism is supposed to be the mystical, non-violent version of Islam, described as a journey “towards the Truth, by means of love and devotion… towards the perfection which all are truly seeking.”
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