The Lahore Bar Association (LBA) has banned Shezan drinks from subordinate court complexes and vowed tough action against those found buying or selling Qadiani-owned products on court premises.
The decision was reached on Thursday at the LBA’s bar room in the LDA plaza following a motion by Advocate Ghulam Mustafa Chaudhry, president of Khatme Nabuwat Lawyers Forum (KNLF).
LBA president Chaudhry Zulfiqar Ali told The Express Tribune said that more than 100 lawyers unanimously voted for the ban on Shezan drinks for being the product of Ahmadis. The house also vowed to ban other products at a later stage.
Zulfiqar said that the association had launched a campaign to ensure a complete ban on Shezan drinks in subordinate court canteens etc. He said that he had constituted a team to enforce this decision. He added that strict action would be taken against canteen owners found selling Shezan drinks in subordinate courts.
KNLF President Advocate Choudhary said the LBA president had directed LBA Vice President Rana Javed Bashir Khan to coordinate enforcement of the ban in sessions courts, district courts, banking court, special court, Aiwan-i-Adl, in Model Town and Cantonment courts.
Several canteen owners, speaking on the condition of anonymity, said the decision would hurt Ahmadi lawyers. They said it was far from clear how such initiatives will promote the welfare of the lawyers’ community.
Speaking with The Express Tribune Advocate Asma Jahangir said the resolution was condemnable. She said that it was also against the law. All lawyers are equal members in the LBA irrespective of their religion, she added.
She said if some lawyers did not like the product they could stop using it but not enforce bans.
Some Ahmadi lawyers, also speaking on the condition of anonymity, said that the decision was condemnable and would hurt Ahmadi lawyers. They said that they had participated in LBA elections and even supported LBA leaders irrespective of religious differences.
They said the decision had disappointed them. They added that they would speak with the LBA executives and request that they take back the decision.
Published in The Express Tribune, February 11th, 2012.