'Those involved in conspiracy will be brought to justice as soon as possible,' says Sanaullah.
RAWALPINDI: Punjab Law Minister Rana Sanaullah stated that “the entire nation demonstrated unity and solidarity in foiling the conspiracy [Rawalpindi violence] to destroy the national unity” during a press conference in Rawalpindi on Thursday.
“The Punjab government thanks civil society as well as the media in foiling this conspiracy,” the minister added.
He also remarked that “those who burn down mosques and Imambarghas are terrorists and criminals.”
“Those involved in conspiracy will be brought to justice as soon as possible,” Sanaullah assured the public.
On November 20, Sanaullah had said that a fact finding committee has started its investigation into the Rawalpindi sectarian clashes.
While speaking at the earlier press conference, he had addressed allegations that the police were involved in the crime.
Although “it is possible that someone made a mistake,” the allegation that police are involved is untrue and “it is propaganda,” he had asserted.
Sanaullah had also said an initial report has been submitted and the team has started groundwork to try and determine whose mistake allowed the violence to ensue. He had added that videos of the procession were recovered from victims’ phones.
He had informed that Justice Mamoonur Rasheed is in Rawalpindi for the investigation, adding that the government has requested that the judicial report be submitted within 30 days.
Counter Terrorism Division (CTD) Additional Inspector General (AIG) Aftab Cheema is also in Rawalpindi and is heading a “very capable and hardworking team,” the law minister had said.
On November 15, sectarian clashes had erupted at an Ashura procession near Fawara Chowk, that left at least 11 people dead and over 80 injured. Unidentified people had also set a portion of the cloth market in Raja Bazaar on fire.
A weekend long curfew was imposed in the city after Friday’s violence to control the sectarian tension.
On November 18, after the curfew was lifted, around seven to eight hundred people had staged a protest against the administration, demanding compensation for losses borne by traders as a result of the Rawalpindi riots.