8 people killed in Pakistan as protesters backing anti-Taliban cleric fight police

Published: June 17, 2014
religion-cleric-attack-police

Pakistani policemen arrest an injured protester during clashes in Lahore, Pakistan, Tuesday, June 17, 2014. AP Photo/K.M. Chaudary

ZAHEER BABAR
THE ASSOCIATED PRESS

LAHORE, Pakistan — Police clashed Tuesday with followers of an anti-Taliban cleric critical of Pakistan’s government in the eastern city of Lahore, violence that killed eight people, officials said.

The cleric, Tahir-ul-Qadri, is based in Canada but has a network of mosques and religious centres across Pakistan. Qadri led a rally of tens of thousands of his supporters that shut down the capital last year, calling for a delay in elections to prevent electoral fraud. His plan to return to Pakistan on June 23 and rally against the government of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has once again put him in the limelight.

Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif said the clashes killed eight people. The head of Jinnah Hospital, Dr. Abdur Raof, said the hospital received 80 wounded.

The clashes started when authorities came to Qadri’s house and seminary complex to remove security barriers that they said had turned the entire vicinity into a no-go area.

“The police were heavily fired upon from inside the … centre,” said Gujjar, speaking on Pakistani television. Gujjar said that gunfire killed the protesters, not police.

A spokesman for Qadri, Shahid Mursaleem, said the police first shot tear gas to disperse the protesters, then opened fire on them. Mursaleem said police arrested 40 to 50 of the cleric’s followers. He said the government is worried about Qadri’s return and is trying to quiet him.

Qadri on Twitter accused the government of trying to divert attention away from the army operations in North Waziristan, which Qadri has supported. Pakistan launched a major offensive Sunday against militants there after Sharif’s push for peace talks failed to produce results.

Qadri struck a chord with people last year by attacking the state’s inability to solve problems such as electricity and unemployment. But his demand that the government be dissolved and replaced by a military-backed caretaker administration raised concerns that he was being used by the nation’s powerful army to delay parliamentary elections. Qadri denied having any connection to the army.

——

Associated Press writer Rebecca Santana in Islamabad contributed to this report.

08:08ET 17-06-14

[+]

Tags: , , , , ,



Readers Comments (0)

Comments are closed.

Featured

India-sexual assault

Angry Indian mob storms jail, makes alleged rapist parade naked in town before beating him to death

IANS Dimapur (Nagaland) — An alleged rapist, suspected to be an illegal Bangladeshi migrant, was dragged out of the high-security central jail in Nagaland’s commercial…
Continue Reading »

sexual assault on minor on flight

Heavily drunk passenger on Delhi-London flight jailed for seeking sex from schoolgirl

HINDUSTAN TIMES A heavily drunk Indian-origin passenger travelling from New Delhi to London who pestered a schoolgirl for sex during the flight has been jailed…
Continue Reading »

Gordon Campbell

Former B.C. Premier visits Aga Khan’s French estate (with photos)

VANCOUVER DESI His Highness Prince Karim Aga Khan received former B.C. Premier Gordon Campbell at his estate in France on Wednesday, according to The Ismaili….
Continue Reading »

LOCAL NEWS

Gordon Campbell

Former B.C. Premier visits Aga Khan’s French estate (with photos)

VANCOUVER DESI His Highness Prince Karim Aga Khan received former B.C. Premier Gordon Campbell at his estate in France on Wednesday, according to The Ismaili….
Continue Reading »

Guru Granth Sahib Surrey BC

Surrey-based Sikh organization to print Guru Granth Sahib

HINDUSTAN TIMES The Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) has finally accepted the demand of non-resident Indian (NRI) Sikhs by agreeing to print Guru Granth Sahib…
Continue Reading »

Correction to March 5 story about B.C. terrorism trial

Terror-Charges-CCTV, Corrective THE CANADIAN PRESS VANCOUVER — In a March 5 story about a trial focusing on an alleged plot to bomb the B.C. legislature,…
Continue Reading »

Don't Miss...

Harrison Ford saviour

Hero surgeon who helped injured Hollywood actor Harrison Ford

IANS Los Angeles – Indian-American spine surgeon Sanjay Khurana was playing golf Thursday when a single-engine plane crashed on the course. The pilot was none…
Continue Reading »

banned in India-sex-soft porn-erotica

‘Fifty Shades of Grey’ banned in India (with photos, video)

IANS Los Angeles – American erotic romantic drama “Fifty Shades of Grey” has been banned in India. The country’s film censors decided the raunchy film…
Continue Reading »

immigrants-work-study-bc-career

Canada-wide initiative helps immigrants find work in fields for which they have prepared

LARISSA CAHUTE VANCOUVER DESI When Manbir Randhawa immigrated from India to B.C., she knew she’d have to “start from scratch” in order to land a…
Continue Reading »

Desi-weird news

Doctor’s afraid to release baby who ‘spontaneously combusted’ to his mom

VANCOUVER DESI Doctors in India are reluctant to release a baby who ‘spontaneously combusted’ to his mom, fearing she suffers from an attention-seeking syndrome, Britain’s…
Continue Reading »

Surrey farm-food bank BC

Volunteers rally in support of God’s Little Acre Farm after food banks refuse donations

JENNIFER SALTMAN VANCOUVER DESI Volunteers are rallying around a philanthropic Surrey farmer after local food banks refused to accept his food donations and questioned his…
Continue Reading »


Bollywood Latest

Khans

Even God can’t bring Bollywood’s Khans together, says filmmaker Farah Khan

HINDUSTAN TIMES Choreographer-turned-filmmaker and TV show host Farah Khan might be good friends with all the three Khans of Bollywood – Shah Rukh, Salman and…
Continue Reading »

Sonakshi Sinha

Gallery: Bollywood stars Caring with Style

VANCOUVER DESI Bollywood actors Aamir Khan, Sonakshi Sinha, Sophie Choudry, Varsha Usgaonkar and Zayed Khan walked the ramp at the tenth annual Caring with Style…
Continue Reading »

Punjabi-Sikh

Bollywood superstar Dharmendra is a “die-hard Punjabi,” says daughter Esha Deol

IANS Mumbai – Actress Esha Deol, who has taken on the role of a judge on “MTV Roadies X2″, says her father and Bollywood superstar…
Continue Reading »