Wants in-depth probe into incidents
By Asim Yasin, The News, April 11, 2008
ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Syed Yousuf Raza Gilani on Thursday condemned the unfortunate incidents of violence against Dr Arbab Ghulam Rahim, Dr Sher Afgan and widespread riots in Karachi, smelling a conspiracy behind these incidents to derail the democratic process in the country.
"We must take notice of these conspiracies, unjustified behaviour and mischief as these acts, I am convinced, are being fuelled by those who do not want the democracy to flourish in our country and want to derail the democratic process while this government is aspiring to bring about consensus, tolerance and national cohesion," he said while delivering a policy statement in the National Assembly on Thursday.
The prime minister's policy statement came when the opposition in the National Assembly registered a strong protest and afterwards boycotted the proceedings of the house. The prime minister said the attacks on Dr Arbab Ghulam Rahim, former chief minister of Sindh in Karachi, and on Dr Sher Afghan Khan Niazi, former federal minister in Lahore, and subsequent violence in Karachi which resulted in the loss of innocent and precious lives and valuable property could not be condoned by any civilised society, especially in our society which had given a clear mandate in favour of the democratic process.
"Our society believes in democratic norms, tolerance and reconciliation," he added. He said the government would never bow before those elements who wanted to derail the system, and would work in the light of the visions of Shaheed Zulfikar Ali Bhutto and his great daughter Shaheed Benazir Bhutto and would not compromise on the democratic principles.
The prime minister assured the nation that these gory incidents would thoroughly be investigated to bring the culprits to justice. "Through this august forum, I can assure the nation in general and this House in particular that we will not allow these anti-democratic forces to succeed in their unholy attempts," he said.
He said the government had decided to thoroughly investigate all the aspects of these events. "We shall "Inshaallah" bring the culprits to justice," he said. The prime minister said the government and its allies of Pakistan Democratic Alliance (PDA) believed in non-violence, reconciliation as the alliance would work to strengthen the democratic process through the supremacy of parliament.
The prime minister said before specifically naming anybody or section, it was imperative to clearly establish the motives and expose the faces of those behind these incidents. "It is imperative to expose those who are behind these acts of violence and the government has ordered a thorough investigation and will bring the culprits to justice," he added.
He said a three-member committee had been constituted in the Punjab while Adviser to the Prime Minister on Interior Rehman Malik was in Karachi to monitor the situation and ascertain the facts.
The prime minister appealed to all the sections of the society and every individual to exercise tolerance, practice accommodation and adhere to law. "If we do not do that, we may again be subjected to the dark years of tyranny and dictatorship from which we have just started to come out," he added.
Also See:Conspiracy against Democracy - By Shafqat Mahmood
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