Original Articles

Islamabad administration and Lal masjid cleric signs agreement with banned outfit leader as guarantor


Islamabad: The capital administration and former Lal Masjid cleric Maulana Abdul Aziz appear to have relaxed their standoff, with the police removing barricades around the mosque and withdrawing from the area.

Police and administration officials said the administration and Mr Aziz agreed to resolve their issues and reach an agreement within two months.

It has been learnt that Maulana Muhammad Ahmed Luhdiyanvi, Patron-in-chief of Ahle Sunnat Wal Jamaat – ASWJ, an anti-Shia militant banned organization since 2012 was made mediator and guarantor from both sides.

After agreement between Islamabad administration and former Lal Masjid cleric Maulana Abdul Aziz, barricades around the mosques were removed and the roads were reopened. The Police contigent deployed nearby was recalled, although some officials are still there stationed.

Spokesman of banned outfit ASWJ, Hafiz Onaib told the media reporters that Maulana Muhammad Ahma Luhdiyanvi, head of ASWJ was mediating between the two sides to resolve the issues.

Haroon Rasheed, nephew of Lal Masjid cleric and son of Ghazi Abdur Rasheed, who was killed during military operation against the miscreants present in the Lal Masjid, sent a message to media reporters, in which he wrote that the administration and Mr Aziz had reached an agreement and Mr Luhdiyanvi was guarantor, under which the police contingent was withdrawn. Negotiations on other demands will be continued.

On agreement signed were made by Deputy Commissioner Islamabad from Administration side, Mr Aziz as second party and Mr Luhdiyanvi as mediator and guarantor.

According to the agreement Lal Masjid cleric and his wife will vacate the mosque within three days and move to Jamia Hafsa in sector-G7 of Islamabad. They will not enter the Lal Masjid Mosque for two months. During this time Haroon Rasheed and others will look after the mosque’s administrative issues and restriction on movement of Mr Aziz will be lifted after two months. Students of Jamia Hafsa will be allowed to study in the Lal Masjid for three months.

In June 2019, the capital administration had removed Mr Aziz as the Khateeb of Lal Masjid and banned him from entering the mosque for three months. Mr Aziz and his family then moved into eight rooms on the mosque premises and began teaching the seminary students there. In February Lal Masjid was cordoned off and First Islamabad Administration with the help of Islamabad Police tried to vacate the mosque from Mr Aziz, his wife and students of the seminary but failed. Sources in capital administration revealed that on the direction of federal government led by PTI, the capital administration contacted to Muhammad Ahmad Luhdiyanvi, head of banned outfit ASWJ, asked him to help in talks to Mr Aziz.

He agreed to become mediator and then guarantor of the agreement between the capital administration and Mr Aziz.

Syed Gul-e-Zahra Rizvi, a human rights activist based in Islamabad had said that agreement is sign of compromised on its writ by the government of Pakistan. She condemned the act of taking the guarantee from a head of banned organization, which is allegedly involved in killings of thousands of innocent Shia-Muslims and running a hatred campaign against Shia-Muslims openly. She said that how was it possible to involve a head of banned outfit and a person who was in the Fourth Schedule List.

Sahil Chandio, a human rights defender and District President of People’s Youth Organization Muzaffargarh said, “The compromised agreement between Islamabad administration and hate-speech making cleric Abdul Aziz along with guarantee of head of a banned outfit is not surprising or novel development, it was most probably expected. From first day Federal Government led by PTI is facilitating the banned outfits involved in sectarian violence.

Imran Khan, the Prime Minister of Pakistan is the biggest apologist of Tehreek Taliban Pakistan-TTP and its ideological allies like banned ASWJ. The persons who should be put into jail are being giving concessions and against those should be started the trial for killing of thousands of the innocence Shia-Muslims are being made mediators and guarantors. From this we can guess that selective deep state policy is continuing still and thugs sitting in the establishment are still seeking strategic depth.