Islamabad [Pakistan], April 20 (ANI): As violence by Tehreek-e-Labbaik Pakistan's (TLP) supporters continues to rage in Lahore and other cities, Pakistan's Punjab government has placed more than 100 clerics of the outlawed group on the list of terrorism and sectarianism suspects.
A top official of the Punjab Home Department confirmed that the decision has been taken on the recommendation of the District Intelligence Committees. He said over 100 TLP clerics have been placed on the Fourth Schedule under the Anti-Terrorism Act, the News International reported.
According to him, the number of Fourth Schedulers could be increased as the Home Department is receiving recommendations from all deputy commissioners of the province.
Sources claimed that their assets have been frozen under the law and their national identity cards and bank accounts have been blocked. Additionally, their names would be placed on the Exit Control List (ECL) by the Interior Ministry.
The Fourth Schedule is a list on which suspects of terrorism and sectarianism are placed under the Anti-Terrorism Act (ATA) 1997. The names of Fourth Schedulers are referred to the local police and law-enforcement agencies for effective monitoring. If a Fourth Scheduler wants to move somewhere, he has to inform the nearby police station.
The assets of the clerics would be probed by the Counterterrorism Department. Furthermore, the Home Department has asked to freeze all properties owned by the TLP.
"After this letter, the TLP would not be able to sell properties including seminaries, agriculture land, etc," said the official. "Sealing of offices of the banned TLP would be decided by the Ministry of Interior," said the official, adding that all DCs have been directed to restrain the movement of TLP workers towards Islamabad.
TLP has recently been banned by the Pakistan government after violent protests following the arrest of their chief Saad Hussain Rizvi in Lahore on April 12.
TLP Pakistan is a hardline religious group with a massive following across Pakistan. Recently, clashes broke out between TLP supporters and law enforcers.
On Sunday, the city of Lahore became a battleground as workers of the recently banned party and policemen clashed. TLP workers also took 11 policemen hostage, who were later released after the first round of talks with the government.
The government is currently engaging in talks with the workers of the TLP after a clash with the police in Lahore on Sunday.
The deadlock between the government and TLP over the ongoing protests across the country continued, as the banned party demanded the resignation of Interior Minister Sheikh Rashid Ahmed, the expulsion of the French ambassador to Pakistan, and the immediate release of the party chief Syed Saad Hussain Rizvi as well as the workers. (ANI)