Saad Hussain Rizvi was arrested in Lahore, as the party’s April 20 deadline to the government was approaching.
Following detention of Tehreek-i-Labbaik Pakistan (TLP) chief Saad Hussain Rizvi protests erupted across major cities in Pakistan on Monday.
The deadline is related to the party’s demands. In last October, a history teacher in France who had shown blasphemous sketches of Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) in class was decapitated and his assailant shot dead by French police as they tried to arrest him.
Timeline of the developments is as under:
Nov 7, 2020 – Rally in Karachi
TLP took out a big rally led by then-TLP chief Allama Khadim Hussain Rizvi, on Sharea Faisal in Karachi, demanding cutting of diplomatic ties with Paris and a boycott of French products.
Nov 12, 2020 – Talks starts
TLP announces the ‘Tahafuz Namoos-i-Risalat’ march from Liaquat Bagh Rawalpindi to Faizabad, Islamabad.
Talks between the capital administration and TLP leaders started and the party seeks security cover for the protest rally.
Nov 14, 2020 Arrests
Blockades installed at different entry points of the capital. Police and the paramilitary force deployed to stop the protest rally from entering the capital city.
181 leaders and activists of the TLP in different parts of Rawalpindi.
Nov 15, 2020 Clash
In Liaquat Bagh police and stick-wielding activists of TLP clashed.
The protesters manage to reach Faizabad Interchange, where they stage a sit-in.
Police resorted to teargas shelling against the stone-pelting protesters. Dozens of police personnel and protesters were injured.
Nov 16, 2020 Demands Accepted
TLP released a copy of the handwritten agreement carrying signatures of Minister for Religious Affairs Pir Noorul Qadri and Interior Minister Ijaz Shah. Agreement showed the government accepted all its four demands.
Hafiz Saad Rizvi, appointed as his father’s successor shortly after the death of TLP founder Allama Khadim Rizvi on November 19, 2020.
Jan 3, 2021 – New Warning
TLP threatens to relaunch its protest if the government did not fulfil its promise of expelling the French ambassador by Feb 17.
Feb 11, 2021 – New Agreement
Protest called off after a new agreement was signed between the party leaders and the government, according to which the government would present the terms of the agreement signed last year in the parliament before April 20.
PM Imran Khan also said that as decided, his government would take the matter to parliament before April 20.
After long negotiations, the government team agreed to meet all the demands by April 20.
April 12, 2021 – TLP chief
TLP naib emir Syed Zaheerul Hassan Shah called upon TLP workers to “come out on the roads” in their areas in protest against the government action.
TLP alleged that government had “turned back on its promise” to expel the French envoy by April 20, rather took Rizvi into custody.