JUI-F long march.
Byline: Aamir Khan Wagan - Larkana
JUI-F chief Maulana Fazulur Rehman has announced Oct 27 as the date for the much-awaited 'long march' towards Islamabad to compel the PTI government to meet his demands.
He has been demanding the resignation of Prime Minister Imran Khan, the dissolution of national and provincial assemblies, and new free and fair elections. It is expected Fazulur Rehman is likely to use his religion card by bringing up the issue of Khatm-i-Nabuwat against the government.
It is an open secret that it is a political move by Fazulur Rehman to mobilise his supporters with life-threatening consequences. In democracy, protest is a democratic and constitutional right of all citizens.
However, it seems unlikely that Imran Khan will accept his demands as he enjoys unprecedented and unwavering support powerful institutions, while Fazulur Rehman is struggling to garner support even from his allies.
Using religion for politics and a lockdown option are dangerous and unwarranted. The problem is not with the protest but with the manner it is being carried out, setting a bad precedent for others. Such a situation may cause negative consequences for all.
Exploiting the religion for petty politics will only promote extremism. For a prosperous and progressive Pakistan, it is imperative to disown and discourage such acts.
The government must engage Fazulur Rehman and all opposition parties politically.