ISLAMABAD: Minister for Interior Rehman Malik on Sunday said that some elements wanted to topple the government in the guise of rallies.
Talking to the media here, Malik said that every true Muslim has the right to protest against the blasphemous movie but plundering and looting under the guise of Ishq-e-Rasool (SAW) Day was against the true spirit of Islam and unacceptable.
The minister said the government had ordered to deploy forces at important and sensitive points to keep the law and order situation under control. “We have gathered information along scientific lines that the security forces remained calm and composed during the protests and the aggression was started by some protesters,” he said.
Malik said that members of banned outfits also came in the field during the protest rallies and they had their own agenda. Their motto was looting and plundering public property in order to satisfy their personal greed, he added.
He said terrorists wanted to turn Pakistan into Afghanistan by forcing their nefarious designs but they must keep in mind that their tactics would be foiled with an iron hand.“Pakistan is a responsible state and we are bound to provide security to foreign diplomats in accordance with international law,” he said.
“Some elements want to ignite terror and horror in the name of religion. It is undoubtedly against the true spirit of Islam which gives a lesson of peace and love for humanity regardless of caste, creed and colour.”
The minister appealed to the national leadership to realize the gravity of the situation and not encourage the enemies of the country. It should be clear to everyone that Pakistan can become a strong, stable and responsible state with the rule of law or it would be pushed towards a civil war, he said.
Lamenting the looting and plundering in Karachi, Lahore and Islamabad, Malik said that the law enforcing agencies tried their best to keep the law and order but terrorists compelled them to use force. He said that terrorists wanted to take the government hostage but they had to face defeat.
Malik said the holiday on Friday to observe Youm-e-Ishq-e-Rasool was announced to show solidarity and integrity to the world and send a message that we are united on the issue. He regretted that some elements joined the ranks of the protesters and wanted to hold the government hostage.
Criticising the Punjab rulers, he said the Punjab government failed to fulfil its responsibilities.The minister said he had proof that Punjab administration indulged in wilful negligence and allowed protesters to enter Islamabad.
Defending the decision to declare Friday a holiday, he said had it been a working day there would have much more damage. He said some of the protests were engineered.The minister strongly condemned the incident of the burning of a church in Mardan and urged the Christian community to remain calm.
He said that a committee headed by the IG had been constituted to probe the burning of church in Mardan.To a question‚ he said 35,000 protesters had entered Islamabad from Punjab during the angry protests on Friday. He said that the protesters were brought to Islamabad via Faizabad and Bharakahu.
The minister said 64 persons were in police custody and investigations were in progress in the matter. He said that shells of the bullets fired by the protesters had been found in Islamabad. The minister said a voice would be raised against blasphemous film at the Saarc forum.He said that Islam gives respect and honour to all religions.