ISLAMABAD: The Lahore High Court Chief Justice Khawaja Muhammad Sharif has contradicted the observation that the Hindu community was involved in funding terrorism in Pakistan, clarifying that observation was misreported and wrongly attributed to him.
A handout issued by the Lahore HC registrar on Wednesday said that it is noted with great concern at the observation made by the Chief Justice while hearing a constitutional petition on extradition of alleged foreign terrorists has been misreported and misconstrued in certain sections of press.
"Finding it malicious, and irresponsible it is strongly contradicted that the observation went to attribute financial support in terrorism to Hindus", the press release said.
The Lahore HC Chief Justice said, "It is clarified that no such observation has ever been made. This court shows sympathy for those who felt hurt at this misleading report, and expresses its belief in the rights granted by our constitutions to minorities".
The minority members of national assembly protested and staged a token walkout from parliament on Tuesday regarding a reported statement by Lahore High Court Chief Justice (CJ) Khawaja Muhammad Sharif that the Hindu community was financing terrorism in Pakistan. The members of the Awami National Party, a ruling coalition partner also joined the Hindu MPs.
The protest was the second raised in the house over press reports in as many days after the Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif was criticized over his appeal to Taliban in a speech to a seminar in Lahore on Sunday to spare his province terror attacks because of some shared views with his PML-N party.
The ruling Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) Hindu member Romesh Lal, who raised the issue, said sentiments of an estimated four million Pakistani Hindus had been injured by the LHC chief justice’s remarks, as reported in a section of the press, that while terrorist bomb blasts were being carried out by Muslims, "money used for this came from Hindus".
The member said if a country was suspected of sponsoring such attacks it should be named, but blame should not be put on just Hindus who, he said, were as good patriots as other Pakistanis.
He appealed to Supreme Court Chief Justice Iftikhar Mohammad Chaudhry to take suo motu notice of Justice Sharif’s remarks. The PPP chief whip and Labour and Manpower Minister Khurshid Ahmed Shah told the house that justice Khwaja Sharif seemed to be blaming India for financing the Taliban rather Hindus. Shah said that he was sure a clarification into the matter would come by tomorrow.