The spokesman for the Punjab government, Malik Ahmed Khan, said on Wednesday that arresting Tehreek-i-Labbaik Pakistan chief Khadim Hussain Rizvi and other Tehreek-i-Labbaik Ya Rasool Allah leaders is proving to be difficult for the provincial authorities.
The TLP chief and TLYRA leaders were declared proclaimed offenders by an anti-terrorism court in Islamabad on Tuesday.
Khan said Punjab Law Minister Rana Sanaullah is in constant contact with the protesters and is trying to convince them to abandon the sit-in. He said the government wants the protest to conclude through dialogue.
Rizvi, on Tuesday, had threatened to hold nationwide protests if the government fails to fulfill the terms agreed in the controversial army-brokered agreement during the Faizabad sit-in last year.
But “the demands made in the Faizabad agreement cannot be fulfilled as the Islamabad High Court has already declared the agreement null and void,” Khan told a news channel.
“There are some elements present at the sit-in who can create a violent situation if the government uses police action [against them]. We want to avoid a Faizabad-like situation at Data Darbar,” Khan said, explaining why the government is erring on the side of caution while dealing with the protest.
Meanwhile, the TLYRA top brass, after discussions on Wednesday, postponed their planned presser, telling the media that they will continue their sit-in until at least Friday, when they will announce their plans.
Pir Afzal Qadri, a senior leader of TLYRA, said they have extended their deadline by two more days on the request of the negotiations team.