LAHORE: Punjab Police on Wednesday arrested over 100 clerics for attempting to hold a rally in Lahore in ‘celebration’ of the assassination of Salmaan Taseer on his death anniversary.
The clerics were gathering to hold a rally on Main Boulevard in Gulberg area of the city.
Meanwhile, Tehreek Labbaik Ya Rasoolallah has organised two separate rallies, one on Mall Road and the other in Gulberg led by Dr Ashraf Asif Jalali and Hafiz Khadim Hussain Rizvi respectively, sources told The Express Tribune.
Salmaan Taseer assassinated
The clerics have been given a go-ahead to hold a rally on Mall Road but not in Gulberg. Heavy police contingents have been deployed at Kalma Chowk and roads have been blocked with containers. Some people clashed with police when they were stopped from going towards the road leading to a severe traffic jams on various roads of the city. Further, the Metro Bus Service has also been suspended after a few clerics and their followers entered its track.
Taseer, who had angered religious zealots with his statements against the country’s controversial blasphemy laws, was killed by his own security guard, an elite force personnel, in a firing incident in Islamabad’s Kohsar Market on January 4, 2011. His assailant Mumtaz Qadri, who had later admitted the killing, was subsequently executed in Rawalpindi’s Adiala jail in 2016.
Blasphemy is a sensitive issue in Pakistan, with allegations often prompting mob violence.
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