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How Tehreek-e-Labbaik, a banned Islamist outfit, has gained floor in Pakistan

The nation has been witnessing large-scale violent protests, particularly in Lahore, in opposition to the federal government for not releasing their social gathering chief Saad Hussain Rizvi

Supporters of Tehreek-e-Labbaik Pakistan social gathering participate in a protest in Karachi demanding the discharge of their chief Hafiz Saad Hussain Rizvi, son of late Khadim Hussain Rizvi. AFP

On Monday, the Pakistan authorities headed by Prime Minister Imran Khan launched 350 activists of the banned Islamist outfit Tehreek-e-Labbaik Pakistan (TLP).

The TLP employees have been holding violent protests throughout the nation, particularly in Lahore, in opposition to the federal government for not releasing their social gathering chief Saad Hussain Rizvi.

Pakistan’s newspaper Dawn in an article on 25 October wrote, “In what appears to be another total surrender before the violent protesters marching towards the capital via GT Road, the federal government on Sunday released more than 350 activists of the banned Tehreek-i-Labbaik Pakistan (TLP), besides announcing that the cases against others would be withdrawn by Wednesday.”

As Islamabad offers with this newest disaster, let’s check out who and what this banned outfit is all about.

Formation of Tehreek-e-Labbaik Pakistan

The TLP is a far-right Islamic extremist political social gathering in Pakistan and was based by Khadim Hussain Rizvi in August 2016.

As per a The Print report, the TLP got here into being after the execution of Mumtaz Qadri, the bodyguard policeman of Punjab governor Salman Taseer. Qadri shot Taseer in 2011. This was after Taseer publicly voiced assist for Asia Bibi, a Pakistani Christian girl who was arrested for blasphemy and accused of insulting the Prophet.

The members of the TLP subscribe to the Barelvi faculty of thought. The trademark of Barelvis is standard sufism, a cult of shrines, and a profound reverence for the Prophet. They are typically considered adherents of a gentler, extra reasonable strategy, besides in relation to khatm-e-nabuwwat (finality of the Prophet-hood) and tauheen-e-risalat (blaspheming the Prophet).

Scholar and creator Khurshid Nadeem instructed TRT World, “Rizvi weaponised the Barelvi sect in the name of blasphemy in a way that’s unparalleled in Pakistan.”

“They have presented themselves as the sole flag bearers of the blasphemy issue… Violence is a currency which sells in today’s times. They have proven that they can also kill and be killed for their cause,” stated columnist Khurshid Nadeem.

The TLP is understood for its protests in opposition to any change to Pakistan’s blasphemy legislation.

Protests by TLP

In 2017, the nation was made conscious of TLP’s energy and affect when it held weeks-long violent protests over the language change within the oath taken by parliamentarians.

Muslim parliamentarians in Pakistan are required to declare that they contemplate members of the Ahmadi sect to be non-Muslim, and their prophet to be “an imposter”. The electoral reform invoice modified the wording of the declaration to “I believe” from “I solemnly swear”, which Rizvi and his supporters deemed unacceptable.

Demonstrators, nearly 2,000 in quantity, armed with sticks, had blocked the primary entrance to the Pakistani capital and had demanded the resignation of the federal legislation minister.

The protests noticed the demise of six folks and over 200 others had been injured and at last, Pakistan’s Minister for Law and Justice Zahid Hamid needed to resign.

In May 2018, Interior Minister Ahsan Iqbal was shot and wounded at a political rally in his house constituency of Narowal, in an obvious assassination try. It was later reported that the attacker belonged to the TLP, a declare which they denied.

In one other case, in March 2019, a pupil recognized as Khateeb Hussain had stabbed affiliate professor Khalid Hameed, of Bahawalpur’s Government Sadiq Egerton College. Investigations revealed that Hussain was involved with a senior member of the TLP previous to the homicide and had sought approval for a similar. The motive behind the stabbing was blasphemy.

In April, Pakistan witnessed anti-France protests when the supporters of the TLP took to the streets to protest in opposition to France over the caricatures of Prophet Muhammad. The protests, which turned violent, noticed lots of being injured in addition to a number of police automobiles and constructing being torched.

It was reported that the protests led to the demise of no less than six policemen and over 800 others had been injured.

The present protests in Pakistan are a results of the arrest of Khadim Hussain Rizvi’s son, Saad Hussain Rizvi being arrested. At least two policemen had been killed throughout clashes between protesters and riot police in Lahore, authorities stated, with unconfirmed stories of a number of protesters additionally being killed.

Rizvi has been held in custody since April when he led protests calling for the expulsion of the French ambassador to Pakistan over feedback by French President Emmanuel Macron final October that had been interpreted by many as Islamophobic.

TLP’s political presence

The social gathering within the 2018 basic elections astonished many, rising because the fifth largest social gathering by way of votes acquired nationally. Surpassing the Pakistan People’s Party, by way of the variety of votes acquired in Punjab, the TLP emerged because the third-largest social gathering within the province, with 4 out of each 5 votes polled for the social gathering coming from Punjab.

As per a paper within the ORF, the TLP’s electoral efficiency confirmed that “unabashed extremism and unrestrained religious rhetoric pays electoral dividends”.

Many believed that Khadim Hussain Rizvi’s demise in November 2020 would outcome within the waning of the motion, however the mammoth crowd marching to the federal capital and its potential to arm-twist the federal government exhibits the TTP’s relevance in Pakistan’s political panorama.

With inputs from businesses

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