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Pakistan PM removes extremist group TLP off the list of banned outfits

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan on Saturday decided to remove the extremist group Tehreek-i-Labbaik Pakistan (TLP) from the list of banned outfits, bowing into hardline Islamists and putting an end to the deadly anti-government agitation.

The TLP was named proscribed organisation in April of this year after violent protests to force the government to dismiss the French ambassador over the matter of blasphemous cartoons published in France,

Last month, the group took to the streets and, after violent protests, entered into an agreement with the government. Though the agreement’s terms were not made public, it was clear from certain leaders’ statements that it included the lifting of a ban on the group.

After receiving report from the Punjab government via the Ministry of Interior, Prime Minister Khan agreed to lift the ban on the TLP.

 

According to reports, the prime minister has been delighted to accord permission for submission of the instant summary to the cabinet by distribution under Rule 17 (1)(b) of the Rules of Business, 1973.

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Reports also suggest that on the recommendation of the Punjab government the cabinet’s approval is [now] sought to de-proscribe the TLP under the Anti-Terrorism Act, 1997.
Approval by circulation, as defined by the Rules of Business of 1973, entails sending summary to federal ministers for their input. 
If minister does not answer within the time limit, it is considered that they have given their approval to the report.

 

The government has already released nearly 2,000 TLP activists, and the group will be able to participate in all types of political activity once the prohibition is lifted.
It would, however, set disastrous precedent, making future governments vulnerable to extremist groups and bullying.
The TLP was founded in 2015 and has organised at least six protests since then, most of which have been in response to alleged disrespect of the Prophet.

 

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