ISLAMABAD: Interior Minsiter Rehman Malik told Tahirul Qadri to vacate the protest location on D-Chowk, warning of an impending terror attacks, Express News reported.
Speaking at a press conference late on Wednesday, Malik said that latest intelligence reports suggested that militant groups were planning an attack on Qadri’s protest, where thousands had gathered, demanding the government to resign and install a caretaker set-up.
“If the impending attack comes, that you, Tahirul Qadri, will be responsible for it, you will be named in all the FIRs since you refused to listen to government and intelligence reports.”
Malik warned that there were six splinter groups of the Taliban and while he may have some sort of arrangement with one group, it was impossible to rule out possibility of an attack.
“I urge you to leave by tonight or latest by tomorrow afternoon,” Malik said, adding that if Qadri adheres to his timeline, then the interior minister was ready to facilitate the clerics transport.
The interior minister added that plans had been finalised for conducting targeted operations among section of Qadri’s supporters. He categorically said that the action will not be along the lines of Lal Masjid operation.
Information Minister Qamar Zaman Kaira while talking to Express News said that the government will not resort to any use of force but will use talks to resolve the matter, and no person, or organisation will be allowed to take the law in their own hands or disturb peace.
President Asif Ali Zardari though took note of Malik’s statement and said that no operation would be conducted, Radio Pakistan reported.
Asked about Zardari’s statement, Kaira told Express News that while that is a decision taken at a higher level, the policy remains the same.