The Khyber Pakhtunkhwa parliamentarians on Monday came hard on the Punjab government and the Chief Minister Punjab for “portraying the Pakhtuns negatively and harassing the Pakhtun community in Punjab in the name of war on terrorism”.
An adjournment motion against what was termed the racial profiling of Pakhtuns in Punjab was tabled by the Awami National Party (ANP) in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa assembly that met here with the speaker Asad Qaisar in the chair. ANP parliamentary leader and former provincial minister Sardar Hussain Babak moved the adjournment motion.
KP MPAs sans a few members squad of the Pakistan Muslim League (PML) Nawaz condemned the racial profiling of Pakhtuns and demanded of the Punjab government to stop the harassment of Pakhtuns in province..
Sardar Babak of ANP said that the Punjab government was harassing Pakhtuns in the name of so-called war against terrorism, which would create hatred among the Pakhtuns.
Maulana Lutfur Rehman of the JUI-F observed that by targeting the Pakhtuns, the Punjab government could not eliminate the terrorism in the province, adding that such like steps would only be disastrous for the whole country.
Bakht Baidar of the QWP said that the Pakhtuns were facing injustice since long, but no one was there to raise voice for them. He demanded of the Punjab government to stop harassment of the Pakhtuns in the name of war against terrorism.
PML-N’s MPA Irshad Khan, however, said that the issue should be investigated first asking the MPs not to politicize the issue. He said that Pakhtuns were being targeted across the world. The treasury members including Shah Farman and Shaukat Yousafzai expressed concern over harassment of Pakhtuns and said that the government should not create division among the people of Pakistan.
Nighat Orakzai of PPP also took exception to the issue and said that Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif should not try to divide Pakistan in the name of terrorism and by maligning the Pakhtuns.
It may be recalled that a PML Nawaz government ally and chief of his own faction of Jamiat-e-Ulema-e-Islam (JUI), Fazal ur Rehman had some days back bitterly criticized the government for singling out the Pakhtun community in Punjab where operation against the criminal elements and terrorists is under way.