Sheikh Rashid Reveals Police Officials Abducted by TLP Released

Sheikh Rashid, the Interior Minister, made an announcement on Monday that the government’s negotiation for the release of 11 policemen had been successful. These officials had been taken hostage in Lahore just a day before by Tehreek-e-Labbaik Pakistan (TLP).

The Interior Minister informed that the government had successfully won the first round of negotiations by getting the TLP to release hostages. The second round of negotiations, he added in a video message early morning, will take place after Sehri.

It has been claimed that a deputy superintendent of the police, as well as 10 additional police officials, was abducted by the workers of the proscribed outfit. Soon after their kidnapping from Lahore, these policemen were tortured too. 

The Punjab Police went on to add that the tragic incident occurred after TLP workers attacked the police station in Nawankot in the early hours of morning. 

Rashid commended the government of Punjab on successfully carrying out these negotiations. He expressed hope that the second round of negotiations will further help resolve the uncertain situation in the country. 

On Thursday, the 15th of April, the relevant authorities of the government sought out the apex court and petitioned to dissolve the Tehreek-e-Labbaik Pakistan (TLP) party. This happened soon after the federal cabinet announced that the group had been outlawed in accordance with the anti-terrorism law of Pakistan. 

Soon after, the cabinet gave its approval to place a ban on the TLP due to the fact that thousands of its supports and activists took to stage violent protests across the country. These demonstrations lasted for three days straight and were started following the arrest of the leader of the party. 

With canes, sticks, as well as guns in their hands, these workers and supports tore the country apart. Their rampage led to the damage of properties worth several millions of rupees, and loss of life. 

After the government imposed the ban, they went on to add that along with the dissolution of the party, the people responsible will also be taken to the Supreme Court. Members of the Federal Cabinet have given the go-ahead to the relevant authorities to do so. 

Sheikh Rashid added that the government had been trying to negotiate peacefully with the proscribed outfit. However, he claimed that no number of meetings bore any fruit because the workers of the TLP had dangerous intentions and refused to agree to take back their agenda for the 20th of April. The Interior Minister revealed these details while at a news conference in Islamabad, where he was accompanied by Noorul Haq Qadri, the Minister for Religious Affairs and Interfaith Harmony. 

The Federal Minister explained how the country’s relations with others could be harmed if ambassadors were expelled. He made this statement in reference to the TLP’s demand to expel the French envoy on account of blasphemous caricatures. 

Rashid said that all ministers of the Federal Cabinet fully agree that the TLP should be banned and consequently, declared as a proscribed organization.