The government has decided to disclose the details of the agreement with the Tehreek-i-Labbaik Pakistan (TLP) in the next 10 days. The military leadership had advised against the use of force against the protesters after Prime Minister (PM) Imran Khan had authorised it, writes Fahd Husain for Dawn.

On Monday, a meeting of the Parliamentary Committee on National Security (PNSC) comprising members of the National Assembly (NA) and Senate took place in Islamabad. The parliamentarians were taken into confidence by the military leadership over a secretive deal between the government and the TLP.

The government has fundamentally decided to make public the agreement it signed with the TLP but the secrecy of the details shall be kept intact until its implementation.


Sources privy to the matter revealed that the premier had authorised the use of force against the TLP marchers. Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Qamar Javed Bajwa presented all the gains and losses of using force against TLP workers.

“The army chief said if the decision-makers were ready to pay the price for using force against the TLP, then the military would do as ordered. However, mention was made of the previous instances where the government had used force against citizens – Lal Masjid and the Model Town incident – and participants of the meeting were reminded of the consequences of both episodes.”

“The military leadership, however, advised against the use of force arguing that it was not a solution. It was then decided to opt for a negotiated settlement in order to, as one source put it, ‘avoid bloodshed’. This is when Mufti Muneeb-ur-Rehman was identified as someone who could mediate an agreement given his standing as a senior Barelvi cleric.”

The TLP protest turned violent, killing seven police officers and hundreds more wounded during clashes with TLP demonstrators marching up towards the capital. November