Pak Interior Minister alleges India's hand in Faizabad protests

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Interior Minister Ahsan Iqbal on Saturday claimed that religious parties protesting in Islamabad's Faizabad had 'contacted India', and that the government was investigating the matter, reported Pakistan media.

Pakistan Interior Minister Ahsan Iqbal. Courtesy: @betterpakistan

Speaking to DawnNews, Iqbal said: "They are not simple people. We can see that they have various resources at their disposal. They have fired tear gas shells [at security forces], they also cut the fibre optic cables of cameras that were monitoring their protest."

The interior minister said the protesters had also "contacted India". "Why they did it, we are looking into it. They have inside information and resources that are being used against the state," he said.

A security person was killed and over 150 others were injured during clashes which broke out after police and paramilitary forces launched an operation to disperse hundreds of protesters blocking main highways leading to the capital Islamabad's Faizabad.

The operation was launched after Islamabad High Court (IHC) on Friday issued contempt of court notice against Interior Minister Ahsan Iqbal for failing to implement 

About 2,000 activists of Tehreek-i-Khatm-i-Nabuwwat, Tehreek-i-Labaik Ya Rasool Allah (TLYR) and the Sunni Tehreek Pakistan (ST) for more than two weeks have been blocking the Islamabad Expressway and Murree Road that connect Islamabad with its only airport and the garrison city of Rawalpindi.

The protesters demand the resignation of law minister Zahid Hamid for changes made about Khaconnectsbuwwat or finality of prophethood oath in the Elections Act 2017 passed in September.

(With agency inputs)

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