Pak court orders demolition of a minaret, dome of Ahmadi mosque
Lahore: A Pakistani court has ordered the demolition of a minaret and dome of an Ahmadi mosque, where over 50 people were killed in an attack by terrorists two years ago.
Additional Session Judge Naeem Ahmed further directed authorities to remove the 'Kalma' (Islamic profession of faith) from the mosque in Ghari Shahu area of Lahore.
The judge issued the directives yesterday in response to a petition filed by Badr Alam, an assistant of lawyer Ismail Qureshi, who is known for his anti-Ahmadi views.
The judge gave his verdict under provisions of the Criminal Procedure Code.
Munawar Ali Shahid, a spokesman for the minority Ahmadi sect, told PTI it was surprising that the judge issued the order without hearing arguments by the lawyer representing the Ahmadis.
Alam, in his petition, asked the judge to direct authorities to remove the Kalma from the front of the mosque, known as Darul Zikr, and demolition of the minaret and dome in line with the Prohibition and Punishment Ordinance of 1984.
He contended that the minaret was similar to those found in regular mosques and could not be part of Darul Zikr as Ahmadis are not Muslims.
Shahid said the mosque in question was built in 1951 and the legislation cited by Alam was introduced in 1984, and thus did not apply to this case.
He said the Ahmadi community would challenge the decision in the Lahore High Court.
Ninety-five people were killed and over 100 injured when heavily armed terrorists stormed two Ahmadi mosques at Garhi Shahu and Model Town areas of Lahore on May 28, 2010.
While Ahmadis 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 Muslims.
Over 1.5 million Ahmadis live in Pakistan.