LAHORE - United against Mumtaz Qadri’s execution and Punjab Women Protection Law, the religious parties have a clear division on corruption issue with some camping with the government and rest with the opposition.

The Jamiat Ulem-e-Islam-F, mainstream party representing Deobandi school of thought, has termed Panama leaks a conspiracy of West and supported government’s ToRs for judicial commission to investigate corruption. Its head Maulana Fazlur Rehman openly supports PML-N’s stance on Panama Papers. Professor Sajid Mir, the head of Markzi Jamiat Ehlehadith, also stands with the government and expresses his party’s complete support to the PML-N. Both parties are government’s ally in centre.

“We have clear stance against corruption. Everyone must be accountable but we should not level allegations on prime minister before complete investigations into the matter. Let the judicial commission start its process,” JUI-F leader Maulana Amjad Khan said. 

The Jamaat-e-Islami, Maulana Sami-ul-Haq’s JUI-S have taken a clear anti-government stance on Panama Papers.

The JI was the part of the opposition which proposed new ToRs in response to the government ones. JI chief Sirajul Haq demanded of the prime minister to present himself for accountability before any other.

“JI believes the accountability should start from the top. The government should accept the opposition’s ToRs if it believes it did nothing wrong,” JI spokesperson Ameerul Azeem told The Nation.

JUI-S secretary general Maulana Abdur Rauf Farooqi also said the accountability should start from the prime minister. He said the JUI-S believed the Panama Papers exposed Sharif family’s hidden wealth.

The religious parties representing Brailvi school of thought, though not ready to sit with each other on many matters, yet openly stand against government on Panama leaks issue. JUP, JUP-Noorani, Pakistan Sunni Tehreek, Sunni Ittehad Council issued repeated statements demanding PM and his family to present themselves for accountability.

Sahibzada Hamid Raza, the head of SIC whose late father Sahibzada Fazal Karim remained ally of Sharifs during his life, is fiercely demanding accountability of Sharif family.

Sahibzada belongs to Faisalabad. The local politics of Rana Sanaullah, the PML-N central leader and Punjab law minister, made Raza rival to the Sharifs.  

The Jamiat Ulema-e-Pakistan, though have soft corner towards Maulana Fazlur Rehman, is not backing government on Panama issue.

“We want accountability of all but it must start from the prime minister and his family,” JUP president Pir Ijaz Hashmi told The Nation.

Majlis-e-Wahdatul Muslimeen, the party representing Shia school of thought and ally of Dr Tahirul Qadri’s Pakistan Awami Tehreek, also sided with the opposition while Allama Sajid Naqvi, the head of Tehreek-e-Islam, the other party of Shia school of thought, has so far issued no statement on Panama Papers.