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`Closing of shrines causing unrest among devotees`

Dawn Report 2017-02-18
HYDERABAD: Leaders of various political, religious and social organisations as well as literary figures on Friday condemned the suicide attack on devotees of great Sun saint Lal Shahbaz Qalandar at his shrine a day earlier and called for decisive action against terrorists and all those involved in destabillsing the country through such acts.

At a press conference in the Hyderabad Press Club, Jamiat Ulema-i-PakistanNoorani (JUP-N) and Milli Yakjehti Council (MYC) president Dr Sahibzada Abul Khair Mohammad Zubair appealed to the Chief of Army Staff General Qamar Javed Bajwa to carry out a ruthless operation against all such elements throughout the country without any discrimination.

He strongly opposed seal-ing of shrines in the name of security arrangements, and stressed that safety and security of devotees and other visitors to shrines should be ensured without disrupting religious activities there.

Denial of access to shrines was enraging devotees, he said, adding that such actions were creating a law and order situation at such places.

The JUP-N leader, who was accompanied by several other party colleagues, noted that the current wave of terrorist attacks across the country proved that the federal and provincial governments had failed to maintain peace and protect citizens. He said the nation might not have suffered such a huge loss of life today had the National Action Plan (NAP) been implemented in letter and spirit.

He slammed the Sindh and Punjab governments for resisting giving the securityforces a `free hand`in their operation against terrorists and criminals. He noted that the ruling parties in both these provinces were also opposing extension to military courts and reforms in the judicial system.

Abdul Waheed Qureshi of Jamaat-i-Islami, Khalid Nadeem of Jamaatud Dawa and a Shia leader, Maulana Imdad Naseemi, also spoke at the press conference.

At a separate press conference in the club, Maulana Imdad Naseemi, Maulana Allah Bachayo Nasri, Maulana Rehmat Ali and other leaders of the Ulemai-Shian-i-Haider-i-Karrar criticised the Sindh government for failing to tackle the post-blast situation and ensure prompt and proper treatment to the affected people.

`They do not deserve to be voted to power again, the leaders said.

Meanwhile, speaking at a gathering held in the office of the Sindh Agricultural and Forestry Workers Coordinating Organisation here on Friday, a number of intellectuals including scholars, writers and poets, along with other members of civil society organisations, condemned the Sehwan carnage and said that the provincial government should be held accountable for the security lapseleadingto the tragedy.

Javed Soz, Amar Sindhu, Arfana Mallah, Punhal Sario, Mustafa Baloch,Mushtaque Mirani and many other prominent figures expressed their views at the gathering organised by the Sindh Civil Society Forum.

The participants held a discussion on the response shown by the provincial government`s institutions. They were of the concerted view that the response was much below the standards.

`It was a shame that the government even failed to provide transport means to rescuers for shifting victims to hospitals,` the audience were told.

LARKANA: Activists and supporters of various religious parties led by Allama Qamar Abbas Naqvi, Allama Mushtaque Hussain Mashadi, Maulana Mohammed Ali Shar, Maulana Ali Nawaz Qasmi, Maulana Badarudin Surhiyo and others gathered outside Jinnahbagh here on Friday to condemn the Sehwan carnage.

The leaders in their speeches called for a ruthless operation against all those outfits involved in terrorism and abetting terrorists.

They criticised the federal interior minister for having a `soft corner` for certain banned outfits.

Sindh National Front chief Mumtaz Ali Bhutto, talking to journalists outside the local antiterrorism court on Friday, described the Sehwan suicide attack as a failure of the Sindh gov-ernment in providing security to citizens. The chief minister along with his cabinet must step down immediately, he said.

Pakistan Sunni Tehreek (PST) provincial leader Khalid Hassan Attari condemned the carnage of Sehwan shrine and demanded strict action against terrorists and their facilitators. He claimed that the US, with India and Afghanistan, were committing terrorist attacks in Pakistan, while innocent Kashmiris in held Kashmir were being killed.

He said that intelligence agencies of India and Afghanistan were involved in the massacre of Sehwan shrine. He said that provincial and federal governments of the country failed to control militant attacks.

Charged activists of PST burnt an Indian flag along with an effigy of the Indian premier.

SUKKUR: Speaking at various rallies and demonstrations, as well as Juma congregations, amidst a closure in Sukkur, Jacobabad and Ghotki districts, local leaders of the Jamiat Ulemai-Pakistan (both factions), Pakistan Sunni Tehreek, Ittehad Ahle Sunnat, Shia Ulema Council, Majlis-iWahdatul Muslimeen and several other Sunni and Shia organisations urged the civilian and military leadership of the country to crush terrorism and its facilitators with an iron hand.Syed Aijaz Ali Shah, Maulvi Ali Mardan Khoso, Abdul Ghaffar Brohi, Yousuf Qadri, Bandah Ali Jafferi, Syed Fazal Abbas Shah, Syed Gulzar Shah, Saif Ali Domki, Deedar Thaheem and others said it`s time to establish the government`s writ and foil nefarious designs of enemies of the state and humankind by employing all available means.

They demanded immediate implementation of NAP to avoid more such incidents in future.

MIRPURKHAS: SUC leader Suhail Abbas Sajidi, leading a rally taken out from Station Chowk, told participants outside the local press club that the fresh wave of terrorism gripping the country was triggered by the civilian and military leaderships` failure to implement NAP.

`People sitting within the power corridors are supporting terrorists,` he alleged, and asked the government to checl( them and ensure safety and security of citizens.

KHAIRPUR: Syed Aadil Hasnain Zaidi of the TNFJ, speaking to reporters here on Friday, said that the Sindh government had miserably failed to control terrorism. He noted that terrorists had been attacking religious figures and shrines at their whim for long but the government appeared helpless in locating and punishing them.