At least two people were killed and several others, including policemen, injured when violence erupted in major cities of the country on Monday afternoon following the arrest of Tehreek-i-Labbaik Pakistan (TLP) chief Allama Saad Hussain Rizvi, a day after he demanded that the federal government expel the ambassador of France over blasphemous caricatures.
The TLP was protesting blasphemous caricatures published in France and demanding that French ambassador be sent home and import of goods from that country banned. The government reached an agreement with the TLP on Nov 16 to involve the parliament to decide the matter in three months. As the Feb 16 deadline neared, the government expressed its inability to implement the agreement and sought more time. The TLP agreed to delay its protest by two-and-a-half months to April 20.
On Sunday, Mr Rizvi, in a video message, asked the TLP workers to be ready to lunch the long march if government failed to meet the deadline. It prompted the government to arrest the TLP chief.