LAHORE, Jan 4: Lawyers have condemned the assassination of Governor Salmaan Taseer and called it a coward act by the enemies of Pakistan.

People’s Lawyers Forum (PLF) Punjab senior vice-president Malik Nasir Awan and additional secretary-general Rana Sufyan Arshad said Taseer was a great leader of Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) who became another victim of religious extremism.

Every Pakistani was shocked and saddened by his assassination, they added.

They said those who killed Taseer wanted to destabilise Pakistan and democracy, but the PPP would not let them succeed in their evil designs.

The Association of Pakistani Lawyers (APL), United Kingdom, also expressed sorrow over Taseer’s assassination.

APL Chairman Barrister Amjad Malik said people might differ with his politics, statements or ideas, particularly his comments on blasphemy laws, but the way he had been eliminated was unlawful and uncalled for and it was a fatal blow to political business in Pakistan.

This was a wrong message to public and tolerance must be preached at this juncture as arguments were best won through dialogue, and not through bullet, he said and demanded that those involved in the assassination must be brought to book.

He said the APL conveys its condolence to PPP leadership too over the loss of one of their key members in the administration.

Lahore High Court Bar Association president Mian Abdul Qudus also condemned the incident and called it an eye-opener for civilised society of Pakistan.

Advocate Muhammad Azhar Siddique said the country was passing through a tough time and people had to deal with it sensibly. “We have to wait for result of investigations before holding anyone responsible,” he added.

LHC holiday: The Lahore High Court principal seat, its regional benches and all subordinate courts in Punjab will remain closed on Wednesday (today) in the wake of Governor Salmaan Taseer’s assassination, says a notification issued by the LHC registrar.

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