ISLAMABAD: Administering of the coronavirus vaccine is not only halal but also the need of the hour, Hafiz Muhammad Tahir Ashrafi, Special Representative of the Prime Minister for Interfaith Harmony, said on Wednesday.
Addressing a press conference here, Hafiz Ashrafi said that Darul Iftaa Pakistan had issued a decree in support of vaccination against the coronavirus disease.
“We have already issued a decree that it is necessary to get vaccinated against coronavirus,” he said, criticising rumour-mongers who were insinuating that the vaccine contained “impure and haram ingredients”.
Hafiz Ashrafi said it was the government’s policy to represent Islam and Muslims at all levels and at all global forums.
Says Pakistan enjoys good relations with Arab countries
“We fully support the just cause of oppressed Kashmiris and their right to self-determination,” he added.
“Kashmir and Palestine issues are dear to the Ummah and the time is not far when these issues will be resolved.”
The PM’s special representative said legal action would be taken against those who hurl insults at respected personalities, declare as Kafir the adherents of sects other than their own and try to spread anarchy in the country.
“Speeches and writings that spread hatred and violence are not allowed in any society. We too have taken steps to contain it.”
Tahir Ashrafi said incidence of forced conversions was declining steadily.
In reply to a question, Hafiz Ashrafi said no misuse of blasphemy law had been reported over the past three months.
“Due to the government’s efforts no one is now using this law for personal benefits or to settle personal scores,” he claimed.
Hafiz Ashrafi, who heads the Pakistan Ulema Council, said a conspiracy was hatched to spread sectarian violence in the country before and after Muharram. But the government took the “right steps” against such elements and succeeded in maintaining peace and harmony.
He assured non-Muslims living in Pakistan that the government was committed to protecting their lives and property.
“There is complete sectarian harmony in the country and those trying to sow seeds of sectarian conflict will fail. We will not allow anyone to spread political, religious and sectarian strife in the country,” he added.
Hafiz Ashrafi said Pakistan had good relations with Arab countries and, without naming any individual or group, slammed those who were using the name of “friendly countries” for their vested purposes.
“It is unfortunate that some political elements are trying to create misunderstandings about Pakistan’s relations with our Arab friends.”
He said collaboration with Middle Eastern countries in different sectors was a “source of satisfaction”.
Published in Dawn, February 4th, 2021