Lahore: The death toll in the terrorist
attacks on two Ahmedi mosques in Punjab`s provincial capital
rose to 95 on Saturday even as leaders of the Pakistani minority
sect said the government’s "going soft" on religious
hardliners had resulted in the carnage.
After receiving complete reports of the number of
bodies removed from the two mosques at Model Town and Garhi
Shahu that were attacked by heavily armed terrorists
yesterday, officials put the death toll at 95.
Over 100 people were injured in the attacks in this
eastern Pakistani city.
The Jamaat-e-Ahamdiyya Pakistan (JAP), which
represents the sect, said the government had been "going soft"
on radical groups that espoused violence against Ahmedis.
While Ahmedis consider themselves Muslim, they were
declared non-Muslim in Pakistan in 1974, and in 1984 they were
legally barred from proselytising or identifying themselves as
"All hardline religious organisations in Pakistan are
against us and are spreading venomous propaganda against us,"
JAP spokesman Qamar Suleman told.
"We are told that the Punjabi Taliban and
Harkat-ul-Mujahideen had carried out the attack. Tell me which
religious party here does not endorse the idea of killing
"The government has never come down hard on elements
that instigate people against us, and that is why it is
equally responsible for what happened yesterday," Suleman
He complained that a section of the media had incited
people against Ahmedis.
"Take the example of prominent anchors like Hamid
Mir, Mubashar Luqman and Amir Liaquat Hussain ? they openly
"Hussain, in a recent show, got an edict from hardline
religious leaders that it is Islamic to kill Ahmedis," he
Suleman said that unless the federal and Punjab
governments acted "seriously and sincerely" to condemn and
eliminate such elements, incidents like yesterday`s attacks
would not stop.
"Pakistani clerics want us to leave Pakistan. They are
giving us this message through such attacks," Suleman said.
Over 1.5 million Ahmedis live in Pakistan.