LANDI KOTAL: The leaders of Pakhtun Tahaffuz Movement have said that they have no anti-state agenda as all their demands are in accordance with the Constitution of the country.
Addressing a well attended public meeting at Bacha Khan Chowk here on Sunday, they took serious exception to what they called a venomous campaign against them on media, branding them traitors and agents of the enemies of the country.
“This movement is neither anti-state nor against any state institution,” the PTM leaders said. They added that their struggle was meant to secure all the legal and constitutional rights for the terrorism-affected Pakhtuns.
The rally was addressed by PTI central leaders Dr Said Alam Mehsud, Eng Tor Gul, Ali Wazir, Advocate Rahim Shah Afridi, Nazeef Lala and a local trader leader Zarqeef Khan Shinwari. None of the local leaders of any political party participated in the PTM gathering.
Leaders say all their demands in accordance with Constitution
The speakers said that PTM had no grudges against any political party, religious sect or any important individual. “All our demands and activities are in accordance with the philosophy on non-violence. We have so far not disturbed the lives and occupations of ordinary citizens during all our previous rallies,” they said.
Read: The Pakhtun spring
The PTM leaders said that Frontier Corps should be replaced with Khasadar and Levies forces at all the checkposts in Fata. They said that law-enforcement agencies shall refrain from disrespecting tribesmen at security checkposts and stop misbehaving with people in the name of cleanup and search operations.
They also demanded immediate release of all the innocent missing persons. They said that the people facing charges of anti-state activities should be produced before the court of law.
The relatives of a number of missing persons from different parts of Khyber Agency participated in the PTM rally. They were holding photos of their missing relatives and placards inscribed with demands for their recovery.
The PTM leaders and their supporters had earlier short stopovers at Bab-i-Khyber in Jamrud and Sultankhel where they were greeted by local tribesmen. They reached the Hospital Chowk in a vehicular procession from where they marched up to Bacha Khan Chowk at Landi Kotal Bazaar.
SENATOR: The newly elected senator of Jamaat-i-Islami, Mushtaq Ahmad Khan, has said that Frontier Crimes Regulation would be abolished if his party came into power.
Addressing a youth convention in Bara on Sunday, he said that FCR was the root cause of the backwardness of tribal areas. He said that more than six million tribal youth became drug addicts owing to lack of job opportunities and healthy activities.
“The political administration is interested in making money for itself instead of solving problems of the tribesmen or spending funds on the development of the region,” said the senator.
JI Khyber chapter chief Shah Faisal said on the occasion that his party would hold local bodies’ elections in Fata after coming into power along with merging the tribal region with Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.
He, however, said that local tribal jirga would also be strengthened to expedite the process of conflict resolution in collaboration with government institutions.
Published in Dawn, April 2nd, 2018