After taking the state hostage, killing seven and injuring hundreds of policemen, the Tehreek-i-Labbaik Pakistan (TLP) has finally coerced the government into letting it off the hook and agreeing to its demands. The recent days exposed contradiction running high in the government corridors. The government that had, in the past, rightly declared the TLP a proscribed organization on the basis of its tendency to turn to violence and radicalize society has now agreed to let it contest elections and has also promised to release the TLP chief and thousands of other members who had been arrested during this protest. By and by, all activists are being released without taking into consideration the pains and pangs of the martyred and injured police officials, who in the line of duty, stood for the state’s writ.
As per the sources, the TLP has agreed to withdraw its demand to have the French envoy expelled from the country and pack their bags and go home. With these terms of agreement, the PTI government has added another feather to its cap of U-turns. If one looks at the TLP-government clashes and negotiations in the past year or so, one goes through a series of crests and troughs. At first there were negotiations when the religious party protested and demanded the expulsion of the French Ambassador in 2020; then the party was termed as a terrorist organization and banned and its chief was arrested. After one year, no progress was made. Around the same time, the last year the party held protests and this year the same happened. The only difference was that their chief was in jail this time so there was one extra demand coming from their side. This time, some government ministers said the party was being funded by India to wreak havoc in Pakistan as if we are not capable of doing so ourselves. Then the government negotiated with terrorists (or bearded men running on Indian bucks) and everyone went home happy and content.
Now that an agreement has been reached, the roads are being cleared (for the time being) and all those arrested will go home. The French ambassador will stay as now the issue of the caricature does not prove as a threat to the religion and the TLP will be able to contest elections. All of this points towards how easy it is to take the state hostage and make it agree to your demands. Right now, it is the TLP, maybe next we will have the TTP and then maybe some more factions. In the border areas along Afghanistan, militant circles are coming to their worst, and we hear that the government has entered into dialogues with the banned Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan. Do pro-public governments cave into terrorist organizations? No way, dear Prime Minister Imran Khan. Please, wake up to the public aspirations the way, you have stood up to the corrupt elements. Any concessions to militant factions, the state seems more like a circus.