Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Pakistan: Clerics council strips their lead cleric Tahir Ashrafi off all positions


The former chairman of Ulema Council used to decide internal and external matters on his own and never bothered to take the Shoora into confidence in the decision-making process.

Times of Ahmad | News Watch | US Desk
Source/Credit: The |Nation
By Staff Report | March 7, 2017

ISLAMABAD - On finding solid evidence of misuse of the office, the Central Executive Body (Majlis-i-Shoora) and the common body (Majlis-i-Amoomi) of the Pakistan Ulema Council unanimously dismissed Maulana Tahir Ashrafi as chairman with voice vote while also cancelled his basic membership of the council.

Flanked by the central leaders of Pakistan Ulema Council, Central Chairman of PUC Sahibzada Zahid Mahmood Qasmi said that there were solid evidence of misuse of office by Maulana Tahir Ashrafi as he had entered into clandestine contracts with the US State Department and other foreign agencies to secure hefty funds so the supreme bodies of PUC had also delinked him from the sub-ordinate bodies of the council Wafaul Masajid Pakistan, Ilm-o-Aman Foundation and Tahaffuz-i-Madaris-i-Diniya.

Announcing the decisions of the council’s meeting held on Monday, Sahibzada Zahid Mahmood Qasmi, who is also member of Islamic Ideology Council, postponed the second annual meeting ‘The Message of Islam Conference’ scheduled to be held on April 12 in Islamabad while it was decided that an all parties Tahaffuz-i-Nnamoos-i-Risalt Conference would be shortly called in Islamabad by the Pakistan Ulema Council.

He further said that the PUC in its meeting condemned terrorism in all its forms and manifestation and put its weight behind recently launched operation Raddul Fasaad to hunt down the militants across the country.

Dispelling the negativities associated with seminaries, the PUC demanded of bringing to an end such propaganda as the Ulema and seminaries across the country were standing with the whole nation against terrorism and would be custodian of the geographical boundaries of the country along with the armed forces of the country and would not step back in rendering any sacrifice for it.

The Chairman of PUC also demanded of the government and the law enforcement agencies to take notice of the foreign funding through some NGOs allegedly used against the interests of the country.

To make operation Raddul Fasaad a success, the Pakistan Ulema Council announced holding of Ulema conventions across the country to sensitize the general public about the menace of the militancy and how they could help government in tracking down the supporters of these perpetrators of violence.

On that occasion, Central Patron-in-Chief, Maulana M Rafiq Jami, Vice Chairman Maulana Obaidur Rehman Zia, Acting Central Secretary General Maulana Shabbir Ahmed Usmani, Provincial President (Punjab) Maulana Hafiz M. Amjad, General Secretary (Punjab) Maulana Abdul Mannan Usmani, Provincial Secretary Information Punjab Maulana Umer Qasmi, Maulana M. Nawas, Maulana Azam Farooq and others were also present.

Responding to a question, the chairman PUC said that they were in favour of military courts for dealing with the terrorism related cases but they were against bringing parallel laws which according to them would create problems in the long run.

To another question, he said that the PUC functions under its constitution and all decisions are supposed to be made in consultation with the Shoora (Central Executive Body), which has right to elect or reject the chairman and other office-bearers with majority vote.

The former chairman of Ulema Council used to decide internal and external matters on his own and never bothered to take the Shoora into confidence in the decision-making process.

He further said that they got impeccable proofs that former chairman had inked foreign contracts which were absolutely against Islam and the manifesto and Constitution of Pakistan Ulema Council so they have to take the extreme step of removing him from his position.


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