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Pakistani Islamist group ends agitation after talks with govt

Last year, the group had occupied Islamabad's Faizabad Chowk for several weeks.

world Updated: Apr 13, 2018 21:16 IST
Imtiaz Ahmad
Imtiaz Ahmad
Hindustan Times, Islamabad
Khadim Hussain Rizvi (centre), leader of Tehrik-e-Labbaik Pakistan Islamist political party at a protest in Islamabad last year.(REUTERS)

After an 11 day sit-in protest that brought parts of Lahore to a standstill, the Tehreek-e-Labbaik Pakistan (TLP) on Friday called off its agitation in several cities following successful talks with the government.

All six TLP demands have been accepted, claimed the group, which had earlier occupied Islamabad's Faizabad Chowk for several weeks. A case regarding the killing of party workers during the Faizabad sit-in was also registered.

TLP leader Pir Afzal Qadri announced the calling off of the protests while speaking to journalists at Data Darbar after the conclusion of negotiations with a government delegation.

“The government had been procrastinating over the issue for long,” he said. Qadri said much of Pakistan had been left paralysed since the TLP announced its agitation.

He added the government had permitted protestors to use loudspeakers for the call to prayer. Qadri said Punjab law minister Rana Sanaullah would meet TLP leaders to present an explanation.

“We will implement the decisions taken by our leadership,” Qadri vowed, saying the protests would have spread nationwide had the government not arrived at the negotiating table.

Authorities removed transport containers placed on Kala Shah Kaku interchange following the development. Demonstrators started leaving the protest sites as traffic returned to normal. Barriers near Data Darbar were removed as the Babu Sabu interchange, Lahore-Islamabad motorway and GT Road were opened for traffic.

First Published: Apr 13, 2018 21:00 IST