TLP’s Afzal Qadri Apologizes For Violent Protests, Anti-State Remarks Over Aasia Bibi’s Acquittal
Tehreek-e-Labbaik Pakistan (TLP) leader Pir Afzal Qadri apologized for the violent protests that erupted after Aasia Bibi acquittal last year and urged party leaders and members to behave in a manner described in the Holy Quran and Sunnah.
In a video message, Qadri also apologized for his personal remarks regarding Aasia Bibi’s acquittal, saying that his ‘religious sentiments’ were hurt and uttered ‘inappropriate’ remarks in the heat of the moment. He apologized to everyone who took offense of his words and vowed to not repeat it again.
“I am a patient of heart disease, paralysis, kidney disease, high blood sugar, and high blood pressure etc, and when the verdict of the Asia Masih case was pronounced, my religious sentiments got hurt and I delivered a speech. I am very sorry for hurting the sentiments of the government, the judiciary and the chief of army staff,” Qadri said, subsequently announcing his retirement from the party.
He also urged TLP leaders and supporters to behave in a manner consistent with the Holy Quran, Sunnah and the Constitution of Pakistan. “We should not allow vandalism and destruction of public properties. Members should behave well, remain peaceful, and refrain from engaging in any activity against the integrity of the state.”
Qadri was booked under sedition and terrorism charges in Gujrat. He was later taken into ‘protective custody’ during a crackdown against TLP in November.
Currently, the Lahore High Court is hearing a bail plea filed by Qadri and TLP chief Khadim Hussain Rizvi since their earlier applications were rejected by an anti-terrorism court.