See More on Facebook

Curiosity, Politics

Imran Khan delivers warning to religious groups

Pakistan premier Imran Khan warns off religious group after supreme court rules on high profile blasphemy case.


Written by

Updated: November 1, 2018

Prime Minister Imran Khan on Wednesday issued a stark warning to religiopolitical groups that have been agitating against the Supreme Court verdict to acquit Asia Bibi, a Christian woman sentenced to death on charges of committing blasphemy.

The premier addressed the matter in a short video message that solely focused on the Asia Bibi verdict and its aftermath. The message was broadcast on state-run PTV.

He said he had been “compelled” to communicate with the nation due to the reaction given and language used by a “small segment” in response to the SC verdict.

Pakistan was founded “in the name of Islam” and the verdict given by the SC is in accordance with the Constitution, which is in line with the teachings of the Holy Quran and sunnah, he said.

He sharply criticised the protests that broke out, and are still underway, across the country in response to the judgement, saying people’s livelihood was being harmed through the roadblocks and demonstrations.

The premier regretted the language used by hardliners against SC judges, the raising of questions against the army chief’s faith and the call for a rebellion amongst the armed forces.

“It is my belief that the principles on which Pakistan was founded… if they are not adhered to Pakistan has no future.

“Our faith is incomplete if we don’t love our Prophet [PBUH],” he said, and highlighted his government’s efforts to fight blasphemous content.

“Which government can function when people say that kill the judges, rebel against the army chief?

“We are already facing such tough economic hurdles. My cabinet and I have yet to take a day off… we are struggling continuously to uplift the people [and] to improve the conditions of the underprivileged.”

Referring to the protesters who have disrupted routine life across the country, he said: “If the Supreme Court does not issue a verdict according to their wishes, does that mean they will come out on the roads and paralyse the country?

“The people are to bear the brunt of this. The labourers who are reliant on daily wages… how will they feed their children?”

The prime minister urged the nation not to allow themselves to be “provoked” by the agitators.

“This is not a service being done for Islam. This is enmity taking place against the country,” Khan observed.

In a stern warning to the extremist elements, the prime minister said: “I appeal to these elements… do not clash with the state.

“I appeal to you, don’t harm this country in order to [increase your] vote bank.

“If you continue doing this… let me make it clear to you… the state will fulfil its duty [and] protect people’s properties and lives.

“We will not allow any vandalism [or] blockage of traffic.

“I appeal to you… do not take the state to a point where it has no option but to take action,” he concluded.

Prime Minister Khan’s address comes as supporters of various religiopolitical groups burnt tires and blocked roads across various parts of the country in reaction to the SC verdict.

For hours the acquittal was met with near silence on the country’s airwaves as broadcasters appeared to steer clear of covering the controversial topic.

One of the most vocal groups — the Tehreek-i-Labbaik Pakistan (TLP) — called for “mutiny” against the army’s top brass and the assassination of the top court’s justices.

Severe traffic jams ensued, causing great diffculty to commuters who reported being stuck on the roads for multiple hours.

The Punjab home department as well as the Sindh and Balochistan governments imposed Section 144 across the respective provinces citing “threats to the law and order situation, sectarian harmony and public peace”. Paramilitary troops were deployed in Islamabad to prevent protesters from reaching the Supreme Court.

Meanwhile, the Jamiat Ulema-i-Islam-Fazl has announced that it will hold countrywide protests on Friday in opposition to the SC ruling.



Enjoyed this story? Share it.


Dawn
About the Author: Dawn is Pakistan's oldest and most widely read English-language newspaper.

Eastern Briefings

All you need to know about Asia


Our Eastern Briefings Newsletter presents curated stories from 22 Asian newspapers from South, Southeast and Northeast Asia.

Sign up and stay updated with the latest news.



By providing us with your email address, you agree to our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.

View Today's Newsletter Here

Curiosity, Politics

Modi defends citizenship decision

PM Modi says it has nothing to do with Indian Muslims. Prime Minister Narendra Modi said, that unity in diversity is integral to India while addressing ‘Aabhar Rally’ at Delhi’s Ramlila Maidan today to kick start Bharatiya Janata Party’s Delhi Assembly Elections campaign slated for early next year, amid protests in Delhi and all over the country against the contentious Citizenship Act and the National Register of Citizenship(NRC). Modi raised slogan of ‘vividhta me ekta, Bharat ki visheshta’ (Unity in diversity is India’s speciality). PM Modi while giving his party and government’s view on CAA and NRC said, “Muslims being misled, I have always ensured that documents will never come in way of development schemes and their beneficiaries.” Citizenship law and NRC have nothing to do with Indian Muslims or with Indian citizens, he clarified. “We have never asked


By The Statesman
December 23, 2019

Curiosity, Politics

Rallies rage on in India over citizenship law

Thousands of students flood streets of Delhi; Assam state sees five protesters shot dead. Thousands of university students flooded the streets of India’s capital yesterday, while a southern state government led a march and demonstrators held a silent protest in the north-east, to protest against a new law giving citizenship to non-Muslims who entered India illegally to flee religious persecution in several neighbouring countries. The protests in New Delhi followed a night of violent clashes between the police and demonstrators at Jamia Millia Islamia University. People who student organisers said were not students set three buses on fire and the police stormed the university library, firing tear gas at students crouched under desks. Members of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s ruling Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party said opposition parties were using th


By The Straits Times
December 17, 2019

Curiosity, Politics

Japan: Koizumi offers no concrete plan on coal

The new environment minister needs to offer better ways to tackle climate change.  During a ministerial meeting of the U.N. climate summit in Madrid on Wednesday, Shinjiro Koizumi, the Environment Minister did not express concrete steps for reducing coal-fired thermal power generation. Environment Minister Shinjiro Koizumi did not express concrete steps for reducing coal-fired thermal power generation, for which construction of new plants is currently underway in Japan, during a ministerial meeting of the U.N. climate summit in Madrid on Wednesday. “I am afraid I cannot share new development on our coal policy today,” Koizumi said at the ongoing 25th Conference of the Parties to the U.N. Framework Convention on Climate


By The Japan News
December 13, 2019

Curiosity, Politics

Taiwan among top 10 study destinations for U.S. students

Thailand and Singapore among other Asian destinations. China welcomed the highest number of U.S. students last year, followed by Japan and India in second and third places, respectively, according to a recent survey about exchange students in Asia. South Korea, Thailand, Hong Kong, Vietnam, Singapore, Taiwan, and Indonesia rounded up the top 10 list of the most popular Asian countries among U.S. students. According to AsiaExchange, “The high level of education, low exposure to crime, economic freedom and good healthcare system are a few examples of why Taiwan is ranked 2nd on the annual Global Peace Index.” It’s also very safe to live in Taiwan, as crime rates are low, the Website stressed, noting that Taiwan’s focus on human rights, gender equality and freedom of speech has made it a top destination for education. Taiwan, whose institutions are strong and reliable, has remained la


By Cod Satrusayang
December 12, 2019

Curiosity, Politics

Power transition after Apec summit

Mahathir open to stepping down after APEC summit. Dr Mahathir Mohamad, the world’s oldest prime minister, has promised to hand over power to anointed successor Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim in spite of new sexual assault allegations against him. Dr Mahathir, 94, said he would not hand over before a summit of Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (Apec) countries that Malaysia is to host in November 2020, but could be ready after that. “I made a promise to hand over and I will, accepting that I thought that a change immediately before the Apec summit would be disruptive. “As far as I’m concerned, I’m stepping down and I’m handing the baton to him (Anwar). If people don’t want him, that is their business, but I will do my part of the promise… irrespective of whatever allegation. I made my promise, I keep my promise, ” he said in an interview w


By The Star
December 11, 2019

Curiosity, Politics

Communist Party of China calls for efforts to deepen reform and expand opening-up

Political Bureau stresses importance of winning three critical battles in 2020. The Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China Central Committee called on Friday for solid efforts to deepen reform and expand opening-up, amid tensions in the external environment, to ensure that the goal of building a moderately prosperous society in all respects will be attained next year. The general trend of China’s economy in maintaining stable and long-term positive operation remains unchanged, according to a statement released after the bureau’s meeting, presided over by Xi Jinping, general secretary of the CPC Central Committee. China will keep its economic growth within a reasonable range in 2020, with more “forwarding-looking, targeted and effective” policies, the statement said. The nation will pursue a policy framework that allows macro policies to be stable, micro policies


By China Daily
December 9, 2019