You there, grow a beard. Now! Sharia Alert. “Islamists smash mobile phones,” from Gulf Daily News:
KHAR, Pakistan: Some 200 gun-toting Islamist militants smashed car cassette players and mobile phone cameras yesterday and ordered tribesmen in a Pakistani region to grow beards, part of a drive to impose Taliban-style values.
The militants took up positions beside a road near Khar, the main town of Bajaur tribal region in northwestern Pakistan, and stopped and searched passing vehicles.
“They smashed cassette players running music and mobile phones fitted with cameras,” a driver said.
He said the militants also urged clean-shaven tribesmen to grow beards.
A government official in Bajaur confirmed the incident but did not say whether authorities planned any action against the militants.
Pakistan’s lawless tribal belt, bordering Afghanistan, is known as a hotbed of support for the militants and critics say the government’s influence there has weakened considerably since the authorities signed peace deals with the militants.
Progressive Pakistanis have become increasingly shocked by the boldness with which religious radicals are spreading their influence in other parts of the country and have demanded firm action by the government against them.
Militants attacked music shops with explosive devices in the town of Charsadda in neighbouring North West Frontier Province, destroying at least five.