During a political turmoil on June 17, 2014, at least 14 PAT workers were killed and dozens sustained injuries during clashes with the Punjab police once they tried to remove barriers outside Qadri’s residence in Model Town of Lahore.
“On the intervention of General Raheel Sharif in 2014, the government had to register a First Information Report (FIR) of the incident. Even now, only General Raheel can give us justice,” Qadri said, while addressing a huge gathering of protesters staging a sit-in on Mall Road in Lahore.
Thousands of PAT activists, including women and children, started marching towards Mall Road on Friday afternoon, while police blocked the main and link roads for traffic.
While addressing the crowd, Qadri threatened to continue the protest until justice is served for the Model Town victims and their families.
Members of varying opposition parties were also present during the sit-in, who also assured Qadri of their complete support.
PAT received a huge back from almost all opposition parties, including the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI), Pakistan Muslim League-Quaid (PML-Q), Muttahida Quami Movement (MQM), Jamaat-i-Islami (JI) and Awami Muslim League (AML).
Qadri asked his supporters if they were ready to continue their sit-in on his call. However, after taking a vow from his supporters, he told them to ‘suspend’ their sit-in as his party had promised to the government that PAT’s protest would be a one-day event.
Earlier, the AML Chief Sheikh Rashid Ahmed warned the government that the Friday sit-in was only a glimpse of the film to be screened after Eid-ul-Fitr.
Calling PAT’s latest sit-in an unjustified protest, leaders of the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) said Tahirul Qadri’s demands were uncalled-for.
The Law Minister of Punjab Rana Sanaullah thought to seek help from Pakistan’s army chief in the Model Town firing incident was absolutely amiss.
PML-N’s Ahsan Iqbal said time for sit-ins and protest has long gone and alleged that PAT’s protest was aimed at creating political uncertainty in the country once again.