Religious leaders launch tirade against Ahmedis in Pak
Last Updated: Wednesday, June 02, 2010, 17:35
  
Lahore: Religious hardliners have launched a fresh tirade against Pakistan's Ahmedi sect, just days after a terrorist attack on mosques of the religious minority left 95 people dead and over 100 injured.

Leaders of the Tahfuz-e-Namoos Risalat Mahaz demanded that the government should take "strict action" against Ahmedi community director Mirza Ghulam Ahmad for committing "blasphemy" by saying that with a stroke of a pen the community had been declared non-Muslims.

Addressing a press conference yesterday, TNRM leaders Allama Razai Mustafa, Allama Abdus Star Saeedi, Qazi Muzafar Iqbal, Qari Zawar Buhadar, Allama Gul Muhammad Aqiqi, Allama Khadim Hussain and Ashraf Jilali did not condemn Friday's attacks on the Ahmedi mosques.

Instead, they demanded that the Ahmedi leaders should be penalised for statements they had issued after the carnage.

Jilali claimed the feelings of Pakistani Muslims were hurt by such statements.

"Qaidianis (Ahmedis) are non-Muslims. Not only Pakistan, but a number of other countries have also declared them so," he said.

"Qaaidians are a threat to our religion and they want to highjack our Quran and Prophet," Jilali said.

He demanded that the government must "come down hard" on the Ahmedis.

Jilali said that 600 Ahmedis were in the Israeli army but did not offer any proof to back up his claim.

The TNRM leaders also spoke at length about the sins allegedly committed by Ahmedis against Islam and Muslims.

To the surprise of liberal segments of society, the comments made by the TNRM leaders were published in almost all Urdu dailies.

However, the electronic media and English newspaper did not cover the press conference.

Jamaat-e-Ahmadiyya Pakistan spokesman Saleemuddin said: "Such propaganda against Ahmedis is not new. Religious extremists have been injecting venom against us even in children studying in seminaries for a long time. They want us to leave Pakistan."

While Ahmedis consider themselves Muslim, they were declared non-Muslims in Pakistan in 1974, and in 1984 they were legally barred from proselytising or identifying themselves as Muslims.

Some 1.5 million Ahmedis live across Pakistan.

PTI


First Published: Wednesday, June 02, 2010, 17:35


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