Just after one week when Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan commemorated the birthday of the Holy Prophet of Islam, he is facing huge pressure from a religious group who was banned by his government, to expel French Ambassador.
Tehreek-e-Labbaik Pakistan a far-right Islamic extremist political party demanding the incumbent government to suspend diplomatic ties with France and expel the French Ambassador over President Emmanuel Macron’s statement in which he defended the right to show Prophet Muhammad cartoon.
Last year in October Macron strongly defended the teacher who showed the cartoon of the Prophet of Islam in class and later he was beheaded. The statement of the French President Macron sparked rage around the Islamic world and Muslims started boycotting French products.
Many Muslim countries protested on the remakes of the French President but Pakistan is a fertile land to keep alive such kinds of issues for the sake of exploitation and maneuvering locally and internationally.
Imran Khan, who is the current Prime Minister of Pakistan when in opposition he played the same religious card at that time to trouble Nawaz Sharif, the then Prime Minister. Today Imran Khan himself falls in that pit that he digs for others.
Imran Khan who came into power in 2018, he is badly failed to deliver according to his slogans that he raised to get the support of ordinary Pakistanis. In this social media era, people listen to his old speeches and then compare them with his today’s actions. Inflation has reached an alarming level in his three years tenure. The middle-class stratum is almost evaporating as they are hardly able to make both ends meet. His recent price hike in petroleum prices up to Rs. 10 has shaken his countrymen and to all those communities to whom he promised that when he will be Prime Minister, he would never raise the prices that affect the common people.
Under current circumstances when the Tehreek-e-Labbaik Pakistan pressure is mounting on Imran Khan government, simultaneously the Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM) an alliance of major political parties also kicked off their countrywide protest against the ruling party by raising the price hike issue.
After the call of the Tehreek-e-Labbaik Pakistan march towards Islamabad, clashes started between the protesters and law enforcement agencies in Lahore, the second-largest city of Pakistan. According to media reports, five people have been killed so far.
What Pakistan has to pay in return if they accept the demand of the protesters to expel the French Ambassador? But when it’s come to the publication of blasphemy cartoons it’s not only France who is involved, these are many other European countries like Demands, Norway whose newspaper published controversial caricatures against the Prophet of Islam.
The Interior Minister of Pakistan before moving to Dubai to watch a cricket match under these critical circumstances cautioned that huge prices have to pay if Pakistan expels the French Ambassador.
This week the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) announced on Thursday that Pakistan will remain on the grey list or its increased monitoring having failings in its counter-terror financing and anti-money laundering.
Back behind the power corridors the relations between Prime Minister and military amid controversy on the position of the head of the country’s top spy agency Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) unfolding into the severe political tension and civil-military strain.
Apart from this, the international emerging scenario in the post-US exit from Afghanistan will also affect the internal politics of Pakistan.