Govt slams Qadri for ‘extra-constitutional’ demands

Published: January 15, 2013
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Kaira says govt cannot go beyond constitution; Malik says FIA will probe cost of long march. PHOTO: PID/FILE

Kaira says govt cannot go beyond constitution; Malik says FIA will probe cost of long march. PHOTO: PID/FILE

ISLAMABAD: 

Top government officials once again hit out at the Minjah-ul-Quran International chief Dr Tahirul Qadri over his long march.

Leading the chorus of criticism, Information Minister Qamar Zaman Kaira said on Monday that Dr Qadri’s “demands are extra-constitutional and the government cannot go beyond the Constitution”.

Even the nation is not aware of the aims and objectives of the long march, Kaira told a news conference in Islamabad.

In the past the PPP also staged “long marches” and waged a political struggle with the support of political forces for the restoration of the Constitution in the country, he said. But Dr Qadari is spearheading a long march for “extra-constitutional demands”.

He said that not a single political party was supporting Dr Qadri’s rally because his demands were not within the ambit of the Constitution.  Since his arrival Dr Qadri kept changing his demands and there were reports that he was giving new charter of demands, which is beyond comprehension.

“All three demands of Dr Qadri are ultra-constitutional as he is calling Parliament and the government useless and wants them to be abolished,” Kaira said. Dr Qadri also wants dissolution of the Election Commission, which is again violation of the Constitution, he added.

Government officials say Dr Qadri is vying for the office of caretaker prime minister. “Gone are the days when a foreigner was appointed as prime minister of the country, casting far-reaching implications on the country’s future,” he said.

Interior Minister Rehman Malik followed suit and criticised Qadri for making misleading claims about the number of rally participants. “Qadri’s claim of bringing four million marchers proved erroneous as the participants accompanying him are less than 20,000,” he claimed.

Malik alleged that Dr Qadri’s march was a part of an international conspiracy against Pakistan. The FIA has issued a notice to Dr Qadri to reveal the source of money spent on the long march.

The minister said Dr Qadri’s name has not been put on the ECL and that he could fly to Canada anytime. Besides Pakistani nationality, Dr Qadri also holds Canadian citizenship.

Published in The Express Tribune, January 15th, 2013. 

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Reader Comments (3)

  • Ali
    Jan 16, 2013 - 6:54AM

    Yea right. Giving development funds to MNA’s and MPAs is part of this constitution. What a joke.

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  • Yasmeen
    Jan 16, 2013 - 10:12PM

    I’m definitely not saying that I find TuQ extremely credible, but with Kaira saying that Qadri wants government to be abolished, I think Kaira is even less credible. That’s ridiculous, and definitely NOT a demand anyone in their right mind would make. If he meant something different, better word choice would be a better idea.

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  • Waddia S.
    Jan 17, 2013 - 1:50AM

    I don’t think that the march and the protest is against constitution. Long march is about revolution, revolution for better governing statistics and ideologies. And revolution has nothing to do with constitution. It is the right of every citizen of Islamic Republic of Pakistan to protest against what he or she thinks wrong, in a credible and constitutional way. In all of the speeches of Qadri, he gave statements along with the proof of constitutional points, so there’s no way left out for doubt. Kaira is talking too way-out-of-philosophy. I think he’s got a doubt on his knowledge about constitution. Well anyway, using criticism and humiliation against anyone by a governmental control head is out of social norms. The behaviour he is showing regarding to the long march is like he has got some fear of losing his some privileges.

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