ISLAMABAD/LAHORE: Demanding the arrest of former interior minister Chaudhary Nisar Ali Khan over the killings of Tehreek-i-Labbaik Ya Rasool Allah (TLYRA) supporters at Faizabad, Pir Afzal Qadri, their patron, deplored that the institution acting as a guarantor of peace with the government had been inactive on the issue.
Separately, lawmakers of the ruling Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N), who had resigned from public office at the behest of Sargodha-based Pir Hameeduddin Sialvi, following the controversy over a Khatm-i-Nubuwat clause in the Elections Act 2017, have begun withdrawing their resignations.
At a press conference held at the National Press Club on Monday, Pir Afzal Qadri said it had been a month since the TLYRA had signed an agreement with the government. He claimed that the government had not taken any steps to execute any of the terms they had agreed on.
Pir Qadri said that seven of their activists were travelling from Rawalpindi to Faizabad, where the TLYRA’s protest was under way, when they were shot at allegedly from the former minister’s house on orders of the incumbent interior minister.
Responding to questions from reporters, he explained: “In March 2016, a rally we had taken out from Liaquatabad, on the occasion of the chehlum of Mumtaz Qadri, faced baton charge and shelling by the police at the same spot…this time around, shots were fired from the house of Chaudhary Nisar, killing seven of our supporters.”
Reporters have been told that an application was submitted in New Town police station over the incident.
“Neither was an FIR registered, nor was there any development over the incident, despite the fact that the government had promised to conduct an inquiry over the matter and assured us that the culprits would be punished,” Pir Qadri added.
He deplored that the institution acting as a guarantor of the agreement had become inactive. “Our basic demand was to sack the law minister but when they launched the operation against our workers, the police failed to disengage them despite the use of strong force, fire power, massive shelling and baton charge,” he said, adding, “But when police started to flee the scene and the administration refused to provide reinforcements the government asked the army to help attack us, and the army chief responded with the offer to talk the way out.”
He added, “The Army became a guarantor to save the country from chaos and further bloodshed.”
He said the TLYRA had given Rs500,000 to the families of each of the seven men who had died in the government operation.
“Looking at the indifferent attitude of the government it, it appears as if another protest is needed to press for release of the Raja Zafarul Haq report over the amendment in the oath for parliamentarians,” he added.
Meanwhile, two MNAs and three MPAs from Sargodha division had submitted written resignations to their respective assemblies on Dec 10, 2017, to express solidarity with Pir Sialvi’s Khatm-i-Nubuwat movement demanding the removal of Punjab Law Minister Rana Sanaullah.
They included MNAs Ghulam Bibi Bharwana from Jhang and Dr Nisar Jatt from Faisalabad, and MPAs Khawaja Nizamuddin Sialvi, Maulana Rehmatullah and Muhammad Khan Baloch.
Mr Baloch appeared in the Punjab Assembly on Monday and joined its proceedings. He told Dawn that his “issue” with the government was resolved so he had returned to the house. He said the two other MPAs — Khawaja Nizam and Maulana Rehmatullah — would follow suit.