PESHAWAR: Jamiat Ulema-i-Islam (JUI-F) chief Maulana Fazlur Rehman has warned that the country is being pushed towards sectarian crisis in a bid to divert the attention of the masses from real political issues.
Speaking at a Khatm-i-Nubuwwat conference here on Monday, he said Pakistan could not afford linguistic and sectarian division, adding that some elements had made attempts to instigate sectarian rifts over the past two weeks by chanting objectionable slogans in processions.
The conference, attended by thousands of JUI-F workers, was also addressed by Maulana Abdul Ghafoor Haideri, Prof Sajid Mir, Maulana Owais Noorani and other leaders of religious parties.
Maulana Fazl said it was a responsibility of the government to take action against those elements who had violated the law and the Constitution. He said that more than 20,000 people had been killed in sectarian clashes in the country over the past two decades.
“The JUI-F has always worked for promoting sectarian harmony and it never encouraged people to attack others’ faith,” Maulana Fazl said. He urged his followers not to take the law into their own hands. He said that sectarian issues were intentionally being flared up in the country to deflect people’s attention from real issues.
“Imran Khan will be the direct beneficiary of sectarian and linguistic rifts,” he said.
The Maulana said that recognition of Israel had been openly discussed for the first time in the country and the “Ahmadi network” had become active in this regard. He warned that his party would never allow recognition of the Jewish state.
He alleged that the UK was patronising Ahmadis in Pakistan, while on the other hand, some elements were trying to amend blasphemy laws.
He gave credit to the late prime minister Zulfikar Ali Bhutto for declaring Ahmadis non-Muslim.