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Seminary halts in KP

By Shamim Shahid-PESHAWAR: In connection with implementation of National Action Plan (N) to ensure eradication of terror, the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government ordered sealing of a seminary in Tangi town of Charsada district, which is owned and run by a local leader of Maulana Fazal Ur Rahman’s Jamiat Ul Ulema Islam (F).

However, the madrasa owner and other JUI (F) leaders alleged malafide intensions behind the decision, saying, “police sealed the seminary at behest of political rivals.” But district police officer has contradicted such allegations, claiming, “action initiated after detail investigation and scrutiny of secret agencies reports.”

Officials at Charsada said that Madrasa Taleem Ul Quran Wa sunna Tangi, was sealed in according to government decisions. Almost students and teachers have already been asked to leave and police squad deployed after eviction of students and teachers. The Madrasa was in occupation of around 400 students mostly from rural parts of Charsada district and adjoining Mohmand and Bajaur tribal agencies.

The JUI(F) District Amir Maulana Mohammad Hasham Khan and owner of Madrasa Pir Gohar Ali Shah (who is also JUI(F) District Charsada Secretary General) during a press conference accused government and police of sealing the madrasa on political grounds. They said that sealing of Madrasa is contrary to Islamic norms and accused what they called political rivals to JUI(F) in Charsada for their involvement in the act. In this respect, they mentioned name of Aftab Ahmad Khan Sherpao’s Quami Watan Party, which according to Maulana Hasham Khan made confused by JUI (F) growing popularity.

Maulana Mohammad Hasham Khan when contacted by this scribe has confirmed raiding of Madrasa by law enforcing agencies and picking up of some suspects in past. “One of the arrested person was a student from Bajaur but he was made free later,” he remarked. The student was arrested on his alleged links with the Islamic States, also called as Daaesh.

Maulana Mohammad Hasham Khan further said, “there was no any justification for sealing of madrasa. If government was suspicious about its students our teachers activities, then they could contact the administrator. He, however, threatened dire consequences if government delay re-functioning of the seminary. He said that it is an old Madrasa and already registered with the government.

District Police Officer Charsada Mr. Khalid Sohail told this scribe that the Madrasa was sealed in according to directives of provincial government. He said, “we have nothing to do with politics and determined to follow government decisions.” He confirmed that several suspects arrested from this Madrasa in past. He also said that license/registration of Madrasa was also expired.

The Official sources said that it was the first seminary closed by government in connection with implementation of National Action Plan. Official said that government through secret and law enforcing agencies engaged in detail scrutiny of seminaries throughout the province.