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Rumours about Qadri’s return to Canada

In this Jan 9, 2013, photo, Tahirul Qadri speaks during an interview with the Associated Press in Lahore. — Photo by AP/File

ISLAMABAD: Whether or not Tehrik-i-Minhajul Quran (TMQ) chief Dr Tahirul Qadri has achieved his goals during the Islamabad sit-in, he may return to Canada later this month, according to sources.

However, TMQ officials have denied that he will return to Canada by the end of the month. According to some media reports, Dr Qadri will leave by an Emirates flight on Jan 28, a day after holding a meeting with government functionaries at the TMQ’s offices in Lahore.

This meeting about the possible revamping of the Election Commission of Pakistan was mentioned in the ‘Islamabad Long March Declaration’ that was signed by Prime Minister Raja Ashraf Pervez and his 10-member team.

TMQ spokesman Tanveer Khan told Dawn that it was true that Dr Qadri and his family had confirmed seats for Jan 28, since at the time of booking seats in Canada they were bound by international airlines laws to purchase return tickets. He categorically denied Dr Qadri leaving the country on this date but did not rule out a journey in near future.

The TMQ has 90 offices around the globe and Dr Qadri is a frequent traveller either for managing organisational matters or for giving lectures, he said.

Critics have apprehension at Dr Qadri’s agenda and goal with many believing that he did everything on the behest of western forces and would again settle down in Canada once his objectives were achieved.

The spokesman said that the TMQ was planning partaking in forthcoming elections and Dr Qadri may not contest personally but his party will.

Media reports say Dr Qadri obtained Canadian nationality on security grounds and was now called summoned by the Canadian government on Feb 5, to explain as to why he violated the oath he took when seeking asylum.

The TMQ spokesman said that the TMQ chief did not obtain Canadian citizenship because of security concerns but to get a credible travel document for seeking visas of different countries. He delivers around 100 lecturers a year.