Shia clerics insist on bringing out processions

Published May 9, 2020
In this file photo, members of the Shia community take part in a procession.  — AFP/File
In this file photo, members of the Shia community take part in a procession. — AFP/File

ISLAMABAD: Several Shia groups have conveyed to the government that they will bring out processions to commemorate the martyrdom of Hazrat Ali and it cannot ban them.

The resolve was expressed by top Shia clerics belonging to different religio-political groups during a meeting with Minister for Religious Affairs Pir Noor-ul-Haq Qadri here on Friday. The Shia clerics belonging to Sindh and Punjab participated in the meeting through video link.

The minister said the current situation required the protection of people from coronavirus and it should be the top priority. He said that permission for the processions would be granted after consultation with the provinces.

The meeting was called to discuss the mourning processions and gatherings related to the martyrdom of Hazrat Ali falling on May 13 to 15 (19th to 21st Ramazan).

While the Sindh government took the decision to ban the processions on April 28, the leaders of Shia groups expressed their defiance only two days ago.

Leaders of Shia groups meet minister

“This created a conflict-like situation. The government should have controlled the social media activism by sectarian groups,” said a senior Shia cleric. He said some proscribed groups had issued provocative and derogatory statements on social media following the Sindh government’s decision.

During the meeting, Mr Qadri lauded the clerics’ role and said religious circles had largely implemented the 20-point action plan agreed between the government and ulema. He praised the managements of Shia mosques for abiding by the directives.

The meeting was attended by Majlis Wahdatul Muslimeen head Allama Nasir Abbas, Shia Ulema Council secretary general Allama Arif Wahidi and Tehreek Nifaz-i-Fiqah Jafaria (TNFJ) senior leaders Allama Basharat Imami and Allama Qamar Zaidi.

Allama Nasir Abbas and Allama Arif Wahidi pointed out that President Arif Alvi had announced that the processions commemorating the martyrdom of Hazrat Ali too would be allowed following the SOPs agreed under the 20-point action plan.

However, Allama Qamar Zaidi told the religious affairs minister that the TNFJ would not accept any obstruction or binding to restrict the processions.

Published in Dawn, May 9th, 2020

Opinion

Sub judice rule
18 Sep 2021

Sub judice rule

It is time this objection, sub judice, is laid to rest.
The Black Caps folly
Updated 18 Sep 2021

The Black Caps folly

There is so much wrong — and worrying — about the entire sorry episode of New Zealand backing out of Pakistan tour.
CT NAP revisited
Updated 18 Sep 2021

CT NAP revisited

A policy of appeasement towards extremists has undermined the state’s writ.
Pathways for reform
Updated 17 Sep 2021

Pathways for reform

Even now the government has said they are listening, but they have not said how they are listening.

Editorial

Blinken’s remarks
Updated 18 Sep 2021

Blinken’s remarks

The US establishment cannot scapegoat Pakistan for two decades of bad policy in Afghanistan.
18 Sep 2021

Worrying survey

THE findings of the Labour Force Survey 2018-19 indicate that some important headline trends have already taken or...
18 Sep 2021

Special needs

THE fact that only 3,653 children with special needs, out of some 300,000 in Sindh, are registered with the...
TTP amnesty?
Updated 17 Sep 2021

TTP amnesty?

An amnesty should be for some individuals, not the entire outfit.
17 Sep 2021

Media regulation

THE needless controversy over media regulation may finally be heading for a resolution. In a meeting with ...
17 Sep 2021

Refusing audit

THE continuous resistance put up by several public-sector organisations to submitting their accounts for audit by ...