PESHAWAR/MANSEHRA, Jan 20: Jamiat Ulema-i-Islam chief Maulana Fazlur Rehman has said that his party would not attend the all parties conference (APC) being convened by the Awami National Party for working out a strategy at the national level to counter terrorism.
Talking to media persons after addressing the condolence reference organised for former chief of Jamaat-i-Islami Qazi Hussain Ahmad at Nishtar Hall here on Sunday, Mr Rehman categorically said that his party would clean the mess left over by the ruling party in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.
“The ANP has promoted terrorism and violence in the region and now the ruling party is trying to involve other parties to remove the dirt. We don’t want to take the blame for the wrongdoings of others,” he said when asked whether the JUI-F would attend the proposed APC.
The ANP has started contacting other political parties to participate in the conference being organised in the wake of assassination of senior minister Bashir Ahmad Bilour in a suicide attack in Peshawar on Dec 22, 2012. Several political parties have accepted the invitation. However, the JUI-F is yet to receive any invitation.
Condemning the killing of 18 civilians in Bara, Khyber Agency, Mr Rehman said that there was complete lawlessness in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Karachi and tribal areas.
He said that governor’s rule was imposed in Balochistan when the people staged a sit-in to protest against killings and lawlessness in Quetta, while the federal government had closed its eyes to the situation in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Fata.
He said that innocent people, including women and children, were killed in the province, but nobody was taking notice.
“Our party strongly criticises this double standard,” he remarked. He opposed Pakistan Tehrik-i-Insaf chairman Imran Khan’s demand that President Asif Ali Zardari should resign from the presidency before general election.
Earlier, addressing the condolence reference the JUI-F chief blamed external forces for ongoing wave of sectarianism in the country. He said that big powers were fuelling sectarianism to weaken Muslims.
The country’s security agencies despite spending the taxpayers’ money had failed to contain foreign interference in the country, he added.
He said that Pakistan was at the crossroads and people were killed on linguistic, sectarian and ethnic grounds. Political parties have to play their role to stop violence, he said and added that aggrandisement of Islam was their joint goal and they should focus on it.
He paid tribute to late Qazi Hussain Ahmad who struggled for rule of law and democracy throughout his life.
He said that unity among Muslims was Qazi Sahab’s top priority and for this purpose Milli Yakjehti Council and Muttahida Majlis-i-Amal were formed.
Federal minister Ghulam Ahmad Bilour, Pakistan Muslim League (likeminded) president Senator Saleem Saifullah Khan, former Afghan prime minister Gulbadin Hekmatyar’ aide Engineer Ghairat Baheer and others also addressed the reference.
JI’s central general secretary Liaquat Bloch said that the death of Qazi Hussain Ahmad was a major loss for the Islamic resistance forces across the world.
He said that the leader fought against dictatorship and served the cause of democracy.
He said that the country could not afford any type of adventurism or unconstitutional act and demanded free and fair election.
He said that honest people should be inducted in the caretaker setup for conducting elections. He urged religious parties to contest next general election from a JUI-F’s no to APC Fazl blames ANP for promoting violence joint platform to defeat secular forces.
In Mansehra, leaders of political parties paid tribute to Qazi Hussain Ahmad and said that his services for the country and Muslim Ummah would be remembered for long.
“Qazi Hussain Ahmad struggled for enforcement of Shariah in the country and played an important role in formation of political alliances to steer the country out of crisis,” said Javed Khan Swati, a PTI leader while speaking at a reference held here on Sunday.
Representatives of almost all political parties, labour unions, lawyers and journalists spoke on the occasion.
“Pakistan has been deprived of a seasoned religious scholar who laid the foundation of Muttahida Majlis-i-Amal to brig people of different sects on a single platform,” said JI leader Tariq Sherazi.
Besides others, traders body president Haroonur Rasheed, transport union’s secretary general Pervez Khan and teachers association’s president of Khalid Zaman also spoke on the occasion.