Reports of an inmate in Abbottabad Central Jail allegedly desecrating the Holy Quran resulted in protests breaking out in the area. The inmate, Imran, is said to have desecrated three copies of the religious text on Saturday.

The staff at Central Jail Malikpura immediately entered the prison cell and collected the copies, furious at what they found. The jail administration said the inmate was moved to Haripur Jail because of the sensitivity of the matter.

However, news of the incident spread quickly and thousands of people in Abbottabad came out to protest, blocking roads, burning tyres and closing their shops.

They demanded that the accused be publicly hanged, and further called for a trial against the accused to be held in a special anti-terrorism court.

Police had to use tear gas and baton charges to control the crowds. Some reports suggest he suffers from mental health issues and has desecrated the Holy Quran before.

A case has been registered against him and investigations are ongoing.