Sectarian tension in District Khushab – cause for great concern

Sectarian tension in District Khushab – cause for great concern

District Khushab, Punjab; March 2019:  Members of the Ahmadiyya community are facing excessive hostility in District Khushab in general, and Quaidabad in particular for a long time.

Miscreants, led by mulla Athar Hussain, continue to severely harass Ahmadi individuals as well as the community. They enjoy support of the local MNA, MPA and councilors. Ahmadis’ houses and shops were burnt here in 1974 by anti-Ahmadiyya elements. This hostility is increasing day by day. Ahmadis have received threats letters in the past, which often resulted in attacks on their persons.

One, Muhammad Bashir Ahmad Shaheen from the group of mulla Athar Hussain attacked Mr. Nawab Ali Shah an Ahmadi at his dispensary. Shaheen called Mr. Shah a Khariji and punched him on face hurting him severely. As a result his lips swelled. His colleagues rescued him from Shaheen. This happened on December 12, 2018.

Mulla Athar Hussain compiled a list of all the Ahmadi men with their workplace addresses, and circulated it urging the locals to socially boycott them. He requested mullas to mention them by name in their sermons and speeches for follow-up action. Ahmadis were declared Wajib ul qatl (must be killed) through fatwas (edicts) of extremist ulama.

These activists have contacted proprietors of houses and shops rented by Ahmadis and urged them to get these vacated. School-owners have been asked to expel Ahmadi children. Stickers have been put up in restaurants and business centres to not admit Ahmadis. Ahmadis face problems at times in buying essential items like vegetables, fruits and miscellaneous items of daily needs. They feel their lives are at risk.

It should be pointed out that mulla Athar Shah resided at Takht Hazara in District Sargodha prior to settling in Quaidabad. There he precipitated a riot in which five Ahmadis were killed and numerous injured. The mulla and his colleagues were booked by the police and punished mildly by a court on findings of guilty.

This mulla’s hostile activities succeeded in depriving Ahmadis of their mosque in village Chak 2/TDA, District Khushab.

This mulla, in league with his acolytes Shamsul Arifeen, Tahir ur Rehman, Zain ul Abideen, Allah Bux etc is busy in their anti-Ahmadiyya provocative and harmful activities. This could lead to violent agitation with frightful consequences. Apparently no action has been taken by the administration to deter him from such activities; hence the hype.

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