Chief of his own faction of the Jamiat Ulema-i-Islam (JUI-F) Maulana Fazlur Rehman accused the government on Thursday of threatening religious leaders to close down seminaries in Malakand division.
Talking to reporters following a meeting of the JUI-F provincial general council, Fazl said the Ulema were being pressed to shut down seminaries, which “is a blatant act of terrorism and extremism”. He said that this act was “illegal and against the Constitution”.
Calling for a protest against what he termed “obscenity and vulgarity in the name of culture in Swat”, Fazl said: “With the ongoing war on terror in this region, interests of the US and its allies might seem to be same but it is actually a campaign to eradicate the Islamic culture and civilisation in this region,” he added.
“Those who have taken up arms have been declared terrorists and those who dance are [considered] peace-loving. Western culture is being imposed on innocent [people] of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa, especially those living in Swat and Malakand Division, in the name of culture,” Fazl said.
He said that the JUI-F had decided to make sure that all such moves were thwarted.
Answering a query regarding the implementation of Action-in-Aid Regulations in tribal areas, he said that these changes were a part of an international agenda “against Pakistan’s interest”.
He said that the JUI-F had called a meeting of all religious parties after Eid to discuss the restoration of the Muttahida Majlis-e-Amal (MMA).
Published in The Express Tribune, July 29th, 2011.