Production of profane material: DPC warns of third world war
PESHAWAR: Difa-i-Pakistan Council on Monday took out a rally on vehicles in the provincial capital against the making of an anti-Islam film in the US and the frequent US drone attacks in the country’s tribal areas, with its leaders warning that the third world war would break out if blasphemous material continued to be produced in the West.
Former deputy speaker of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Assembly Ikramullah Shahid, who belongs to Jamiat Ulema-i-Islam-Sami group, offered $200,000 bounty for the killing of the maker of the anti-Islam film.
The rally began from Jamaat-i-Islami’s provincial headquarters in Chamkani area and ended at Iqra Chowk on University Road. Noted among speakers were DPC chairman Maulana Samiul Haq and leaders Hafiz Saeed, Munawar Hassan, Mohammad Ahmad Ludhianvi, former ISI chief Hameed Gul.
Mr Saeed said Muslims could make no compromise on the respect and dignity of the Holy Prophet Mohammad (PBUH). He said the US had already killed thousands of Muslims by imposing a war on the region, but production of the blasphemous film in the US had hurt the sentiments of Muslims a great deal.
“Americans are committing atrocities in Afghanistan, Iraq and other parts of the world, but Muslims can’t stay silent if any attempt is made to damage the respect of the Holy Prophet Mohammad (PBUH) and his companions,” he said.
He said the US president had defended the filmmaker in the United Nations General Assembly by saying freedom of expression couldn’t be restricted in his country.
“It means that the US government is involved in the activity,” he said, adding that three million blasphemous caricatures had been designed in the US and Europe.
Mr Hassan said western countries were promoting terrorism worldwide by their thoughts and action and that the US was trying to impose its agenda on Muslims through agents. Mr Gul said if the US could not try the maker of the anti-Islam film, then it should hand him over to them.
“We will provide him with the opportunity of free and fair trial,” he said. He also demanded immediate end to the US drone strikes in South and North Waziristan agencies, saying they’re killing innocent people. Mr Gul said the US could not ignore Pakistan due to its geo-strategic importance. The DPC rally adversely affected life and business in the city.
The government and private educational institutions, markets and filling stations on the rally route, especially in University Road and Sunehri Masjid Road areas, remained closed. Police barricaded the front side of the US Consulate on Hayat Avenue by containers and razor wires.
The administration had changed the rally route from Khyber Road to Sher Shah Suri Road after talks with DPC leaders earlier night. The rally was scheduled to end in Karkhano Market near Khyber Agency, but it ended at Iqra Chowk.
Three underage security guards, who walked by vehicles, fainted for being exhausted by the journey. They were given first aid in an ambulance of Jamaatud Dawa. Road users complained of being inconvenienced by closure of roads.
Commuters said traffic police returned public transport vehicles at different points to the general bus stand forcing them to cover long distances by foot. They complained that cabbies and auto-rickshaw drivers fleeced them. According to police, Ring Road, Shami Road and Warsak Road were the only road in the city that were open to traffic as they didn’t fall on the rally route.
Containers were placed on Khyber Road, while public transport was stopped from taking Civil Quarters Road. Police didn’t allow people to use University Road and diverting traffic to Bara Road.