Activists of Tehrik-i-Labbaik Ya Rasool Allah chant slogans at chehlum of Faizabad sit-in victims. — White Star
Activists of Tehrik-i-Labbaik Ya Rasool Allah chant slogans at chehlum of Faizabad sit-in victims. — White Star

RAWALPINDI: The Tehreek-i-Labaik Ya Rasool Allah returned to Rawalpindi on Thursday to hold a chehlum ceremony in Liaquat Bagh for six Faizabad sit-in participants who died during the operation on Nov 25.

The ceremony, titled the Khatm-i-Nabuwat Conference, was attended by leaders and workers of religious parties. Among them were Tehreek-i-Labaik Ya Rasool Allah leader Khadim Hussain Rizvi, Pir Syed Anayatul Haq Shah, Pir Riaz Hussain Shah, Mufti Qari Saeedur Rehman, Maula Abdul Latif Qadri and others.

Also read: Who is Khadim Rizvi?

Although the participants were limited to main Liaquat Bagh, the city saw heavy traffic and congestion because of the arrival of rallies. All the roads leading to Raja Bazaar were choked, causing problems for commuters.

At the event, Mr Rizvi demanded that the Raja Zafarul Haq report on changes to the Khatm-i-Nabuwat declaration for electoral candidates be published.

He said the report would be published as soon as possible, and an inquiry board for the deceased sit-in participants would be activated.

“It is the duty of the federal and provincial governments to implement the agreement held in November before ending the Faizabad sit-in, otherwise Tehreek-i-Labaik Ya Rasool Allah will launch a countrywide movement,” he said.

He added that the party had given Rs500,000 in compensation to the families of those killed during the sit-in, and would also give them Rs10,000 per month.

Mr Rizvi also warned against speculations about the deal with the government and said allegations regarding money-making through the sit-in were false as they would not compromise on the dignity of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH).

The event began at 10am and continued until the evening, during which time custodians of various mausoleums made speeches, and the participants offered prayers for the deceased.

The district administration had given conditional permission for the event, on assurances that it would end at 5pm before Maghrib prayers.

According to the agreement between the organisers and the district administration, the conference would begin at 9am and end at 5pm, the sound system would be turned down low and no speakers would be installed on Murree Road.

The organisers were also to make necessary security arrangements under the supervision of local police, and no sectarian speech or objectionable material would be made, distributed or displayed.

According to a senior district administration official, additional forces had been deployed by the police department, and 500 volunteers of the organisers helped police keep an eye over suspicious people or articles.

The district administration also directed the Rawalpindi Medical University to ensure that all three government-run hospitals were on high alert to deal with any emergency.

The police’s Special Branch deployed its plainclothes personnel to monitor the conference and prepare the report on the conference’s proceedings.

Meanwhile, Sunni Tehreek will begin its train march from Rawalpindi to Karachi on today (Jan 5), to hold its Khatm-i-Nabuwat Conference in Nishtar Park on Jan 6.

Published in Dawn, January 5th, 2018

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