Interior Minister Ahsan Iqbal on Friday called on clerics and religious leaders to denounce “the fatwas for jihad” posted by people on social media.
While addressing the National Assembly, Iqbal said, “Only the state can declare jihad; no group of people has the right to declare jihad against another group.”
He added that enemies of the state want Muslims pitted against each other. “We need to prevent that from happening and I humbly request religious leaders to condemn the fatwas posted on social media.”
“If we let this go on, the country will turn into a battlefield with various groups and ethnicities pitted against each other,” Iqbal said.
The interior minister also condemned the suicide bombing at Dargah Pir Rakhel Shah in Fatehpur, a small town in the Jhal Magsi district of Balochistan, that took place Thursday night.
He said that security forces were working towards arresting the facilitators of the blast, adding “The country is telling the sponsors of terrorism that their cowardly attempts [at creating fear] will not crush our defiant spirit.”
At least 20 people lost their lives in the suicide explosion that took place at the entrance to the dargah at a time when scores of people had gathered to pay their respects.
Thursdays are usually busy in terms of attendance at shrines as the day is considered spiritually significant, but the day was also significant for the dargah as it was hosting a bi-monthly event.