30 students arrested in crackdown on seminaries
By Azizullah Khan
QUETTA: Law enforcement agencies have arrested about 30 students during the last few days in a crackdown against religious seminaries, said Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam (JUI) District Ameer Maulvi Noor Muhammad here on Monday.
An emergency meeting of the Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam (JUI) chaired by Maulvi Noor Muhammad and attended by several party leaders and workers was convened in this regard. The meeting decided that the party would protest in front of Governor’s House and in all forums. Maulvi Noor Muhammad said the date would be announced in a meeting scheduled for tomorrow (Wednesday).
Law enforcement agencies raided several seminaries and searched the houses of two religious teachers, Maulvi Abdur Rahim and Maulvi Abdul Samad, last night, he added. “The party’s central leadership was contacted and they have allowed us to protest against such activities. We have planned to protest in front of Governor’s House and will hold in Quetta,” he said.
Balochistan IGP Shoaib Saddal confirmed the arrest of about 85 Afghans including 30 seminary students for illegally staying in Pakistan. The campaign was started on January 15 when US Ambassador Nancy Powell and Federal Interior Minister Faisal Saleh Hayat visited Quetta, but IGP Saddal denied the impression and said police cracked down whenever disturbance was caused. Quetta JUI leader Maulvi Abdul Qadir Luni said law enforcement agencies had arrested about a 100 seminary students, but were saying only 30 students had been arrested. He said JUI leaders had inquired about the crackdown from authorities concerned and were told that senior officials had sent the order. Nobody knew who had given the order to crackdown on seminary students, he said, adding seminaries in Quetta and its suburbs had been raided.