Religious, political parties slam crackdown

Religious, political parties slam crackdown

November 26, 2017


LAHORE - Barelvi/Sunni groups, custodians of shrines, PTI, PPP, PML-Q, Jamaat-e-Islami, Jamaatud Dawa, Majlis Wahdate Muslimeen and Pakistan Awami Tehreek on Saturday condemned the government action against protesting activists of the Tehreek Labbaik Ya Rasool Allah.

Expressing concerns over the law and order situation, leaders of the aforementioned parties advised the government to accept demand of the protesters and remove Federal Law Minister Zahid Hamid.

In separate statements, they advised the protesters and supporters of Allama Khadim Hussain Rizvi to remain peaceful and not to attack government and private installations.

PTI leaders Mahmoodur Rasheed, PPP leader Chaudhry Manzoor Hussain, PML-Q President Chaudhry Shujaat Hussain and senior leader Chaudhry Pervaiz Elahi condemned use of force against the protesters and said the government had totally failed to address the tense situation.

“Why Raja Zafarul Haq committee’s report is not being made public?” asked the Chaudhrys. They said the prime minister should himself start negotiations with the protest leaders to defuse the situation after use of force against the protesters. Instead of going to Lahore to seek more instructions from Nawaz Sharif, Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan should have gone to Faizabad sit-in for talks, Shujaat said.

He said: 'Had I been the prime minister, the issue would have been resolved without an operation.”

Jamaatud Dawa chief Hafiz Saeed expressed serious concerns over the operation against the participants of Islamabad sit-in and violent incidents in various cities.

He urged the government to resolve the issue peacefully and said violence breeds violence and has never been a solution to any problem. In the current situation, he said, the country cannot afford any mishap.

Jamaat-e-Islami chief Sirajul Haq expressed grief over the operation and said use of force was not the solution. He said the government allowed the situation worsen to save a minister and kept the entire nation on tenterhooks for more than two weeks. He said the report of the Raja Zafarul Haq committee had not been made public despite protests.

The JI chief said that either the law minister should resign or point out those behind changes to the declaration of finality of prophethood. Stating that use of force to disperse the protesters was an unwise step, the JI chief said this had further complicated the situation.

He said the government should not have abandoned the dialogue. He said it was government’s responsibility to expose the elements conspiring against the faith in finality of prophethood and award them deterrent punishment.

He said the agitation would continue as long as those behind this conspiracy are not punished.

Pakistan Awami Tehreek Chairman Dr Tahirul Qadri said Nawaz Sharif was behind the amendment to the declaration of finality of prophethood. These amendments were made with the help of foreign powers to waive disqualification, he said.

 “The ministers, who attacked very foundation of our faith, have been bailed out,” Qadri said. “Sharifs fear if these ministers are dismissed, they will disclose names of the mastermind,” he said.

He said it was not about reversal of the changes, it was about naming those who dared to change the law and those who dictated changes to the law.

Majlis Wahdate Muslimeen President Raja Nasir Abbas, Sunni Ittehad Council head Sahibzada Hamid Raza, Jamiat Ulema-e-Pakistan-Imam Noorani President Pir Ijaz Hashmi, JUP-Noorani chief Sahibzada Abual Khair and leaders of other Barelvi and Shia parties also condemned the police action against the protesters. Hamid Raza said he was fully backing the protesters and his party workers stood by them.

Custodians of all important shrines also expressed serious concerns over the use of force against the protesters and advised the government to resolve the issue and remove the federal law minister.