Pakistan denies Ahmadis included in National Commission for Minorities

Pakistan’s Minister for Religious Affairs Pir Noor-ul-Haq Qadri gives an exclusive interview to Arab News in Islamabad on April 23, 2020. (AN Photo)
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Updated 30 April 2020

Pakistan denies Ahmadis included in National Commission for Minorities

  • Some media reports claimed the government had decided to include Ahmadis as the commission’s non-Muslim members
  • Pakistan declared the Ahmadi community non-Muslim in 1974

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan’s Minister for Religious Affairs Noorul Haq Qadri categorically denied in a statement late Wednesday night that the government was planning to include members of the Ahmadi community in the National Commission for Minorities.

The statement was made in response to media reports that the government intended to appoint representatives of the Ahmadi community as non-Muslim commission members.

“The belief in the finality of Prophethood is our cardinal belief and we cannot compromise on that,” Qadri said.

“The government’s position is clear that it can only include a group or party in the country’s constitutional bodies after that group recognizes the constitution,” Qadri said, adding that the Ahamdi community could “join any committee or commission of Pakistan after doing the same.”

Pakistan declared Ahmadis non-Muslims in 1974 and, according one estimate, there are about half a million Ahmadis in the country.

The National Commission for Minorities was formed in the 1990s, though its legal status is unclear and some media channels recently claimed that the government had approved Ahmadi representation in the commission.


Islamabad court orders government to allow India to appoint lawyer for Kulbhushan Jadhav

Updated 03 August 2020

Islamabad court orders government to allow India to appoint lawyer for Kulbhushan Jadhav

  • The former naval commander was arrested in 2016 in Pakistan’s southwestern province of Baluchistan and convicted of espionage
  • India took the matter to the International Court of Justice which ordered a stay on Jadhav’s execution in 2019

ISLAMABAD: The Islamabad high court on Monday ordered the Pakistan government to give India a ‘chance’ to appoint a representative for Kulbhushan Jadhav, an Indian man condemned to death on charges of spying, Pakistani media reported.
Former Indian Naval Commander Kulbhushan Jadhav was arrested in 2016 in Pakistan’s southwestern province of Baluchistan and convicted of espionage and sabotage by a Pakistani military court a year later.
India took the matter to the International Court of Justice (ICJ) which ordered a stay on Jadhav’s execution in 2019, as well as consular access for India. Pakistan was also ordered to conduct an “effective review” of the death penalty.
Indian officials say they have been prevented from obtaining Jadhav’s written consent to arrange legal representation, necessary for a review of his case. Earlier this month, Pakistan invited India to file a review against the death sentence in light of the ICJ judgment.
A two-member bench comprising IHC chief justice Athar Minallah and Justice Miangul Hassan Aurangzeb heard a petition filed by the Pakistan government to appoint a lawyer for Jadhav on Monday.
Responding to the judge’s remarks, Pakistan’s Attorney General Khalid Javed Khan said an ordinance had been passed by parliament recently to give an opportunity to India and Jadhav to file a review petition against the sentence.
“We will contact India again through the Foreign Office,” he said.
Under the ‘International Court of Justice Review and Reconsideration Ordinance 2020’, which was enacted on May 20, a petition for the review of a military court’s decision can be filed with the Islamabad high court through an application within 60 days of its promulgation.
The Pakistan government has said Jadhav refuses to file a review petition or an application to reconsider the military court’s verdict.
Indian external affairs ministry spokesperson Anurag Srivastava said last week Pakistan had blocked all avenues for effective remedy available to India in the Jadhav case, saying New Delhi has so far requested consular access to Jadhav for 12 times over the past one year.