On Thursday (March 10), a heavy contingent of the police raided the Parliament Lodges to expel members of the Ansarul Islam — a volunteer force of the Jamat-e-Ulema Islam-Fazl (JUI-F) — who were invited to provide security to Opposition lawmakers.

At least four legislators and more than a dozen Ansarul Islam volunteers were arrested during the operation. As per reports, MNA Maulana Jamaluddin, Salahuddin Ayubi, and spokesperson Mufti Abdullah were also arrested.

After the release of JUI-F workers and lawmakers, Maulana Fazlur Rehman directed party workers to open the highways they had earlier blocked in protest against the police operation. He had set a deadline of 9am for the government to release arrested parliamentarians and party workers.


In an audio message shared on Twitter, Maulana Fazl said there was “no need” to block the roads now since all parliamentarians and workers have been released.

Addressing a press conference after the police action, Interior Minister Sheikh Rasheed had said the Opposition was bringing “mobs” into parliament, adding that “no one is allowed to keep private militia”.

The federal minister had said the government conducted “five-hour long talks with the Opposition” as Pakistan was not a “banana state”.

“I have directed all chief secretaries and inspector generals to take those into custody who attempt to take the law into their hands.”

Rasheed warned that no one should take the law into their hands, otherwise action would be taken

Information Minister Fawad Chaudhry took to Twitter and said, “The Jamiat goons apologised by holding their ears and left. They are part of a specific mafia group that is working for their own interests.”

Special Assistant to the Prime Minister (SAPM) on Political Communication Dr Shahbaz Gill said that Maulana Fazl had been “making calls all night and asking for forgiveness and for his workers to be released so he could have some honour left”.

Opposition Leader and Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) President Shehbaz Sharif said that raiding the residence of members of parliament was dictatorship and fascism.

Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) Chairman Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari said that the attack on parliamentarians cannot be tolerated. “This police attack is proof that Imran Khan is panicking,” Bilawal said, “Imran Khan, enough is enough,” he warned.

The incident happened just days after the Opposition filed a no-confidence motion against Prime Minister (PM) Imran Khan.