Govt, TLP reach agreement, demands will be put forward in parliament

'Blasphemy is committed under a certain plan in the west,' says Imran

ISLAMABAD: The federal government and Tehreek-e-Labbaik Pakistan (TLP) have agreed to table the TLP demands in the Parliament which would decide the matter while the TLP has extended its deadline from February to April 20.

A copy of the agreement, available with Pakistan Today, has been duly signed by Interior Minister Sheikh Rasheed Ahmed and Interfaith Harmony Minister Pir Noorul Haq Qadri while Ghulam Ghous Hazarvi, Dr Shafique Amini, Ghulam Abbas Faizi and M Umairul Azhari signed the document on behalf of the TLP Shura.

According to the document signed on January 11, 2021, the TLP had signed an agreement with the PTI government on November 16, 2020, which could not be implemented.

“The government and TLP were in talks for the past one month as the government resolved to implement it. It has been agreed that the federal government would table the agreement in the Parliament by April 20 and decisions would be taken with a nod of the parliament,” the agreement says.

The agreement said that those TLP leaders whose names had been registered in the fourth schedule would be absolved. The agreement said that the agreement would stand cancelled if any clause of the agreement is violated. The document said that the prime minister would formally announce the deal which would be implemented amicably.

Meanwhile, Prime Minister Imran Khan also announced the agreement on Thursday during a TV interview, saying that the government negotiators had successful talks with the leadership of TLP and it had been agreed to extend its deadline of February to April 20.

“Our [negotiating] team was in talks with the TLP which turned out to be successful. The government has reached an agreement with the TLP which has extended its deadline from February to April 20. According to the agreement, the government would table the TLP demands in the Parliament which would decide the matter,” Khan told media.

Imran said that no government in past has even taken a clear stand for the glory of Holy Prophet Muhammad (Peace Be Upon Him).

He clarified that the government did not raise its voice regarding the honour of the Holy Prophet (PBUH) for want of votes.

“This is my belief. In Western countries, the honour of the Holy Prophet (PBUH) is questioned under a plan. The western countries don’t understand our belief. I have raised this issue time and again in the United Nations and UN also agreed to Pakistan’s opinion,” the prime minister said.

He said the agreement stipulates that decisions will be made with the approval of parliament. The agreement states that the names of TLP workers included in the Fourth Schedule will be removed.

“Today, I would like to tell the TLP and the people of my country that no one before my government has taken a clear stand for the glory of Holy Prophet Muhammad (PBUH).  Rather my government has taken a clear global position on this sensitive issue. Reactions from Muslim countries came afterwards over the subject. The UN also supported our position on blasphemy,” concluded the premier.

Mian Abrar
Mian Abrar
The writer heads Pakistan Today's Islamabad Bureau. He has a special focus on counter-terrorism and inter-state relations in Asia, Asia Pacific and South East Asia regions. He tweets as @mian_abrar and also can be reached at [email protected]
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