'Bhutto Wanted Religious Leaders Testify He Had Ahmadis Declared Non-Muslim'

'Bhutto Wanted Religious Leaders Testify He Had Ahmadis Declared Non-Muslim'
Footage of Ali Musa Gillani, the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) MNA-elect from Multan in the recent by-elections, speaking about former prime minister Zulfikar Ali Bhutto and Ahmadis having being declared non-Muslim has been circulating on social media.

Gillani, the son of former prime minister Yousaf Raza Gillani, can be heard talking about how Bhutto had summoned Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam (JUI) founding member Mufti Mehmood and former Religious Affairs Minister Kausar Niazi before he was due to be hanged. Bhutto, Gillani can be heard saying, urged the two to bear witness before the Almighty on the Day of Judgement about how it was Bhutto who had had the Ahmadis declared non-Muslim to protect the honour of the Prophet (PBUH). Gillanis comments are met with cheers extolling the former prime minister.

Comments on micro-blogging site Twitter following the footage being circulated, however, were anything but kind.

In a tweet, former Dawn editor Abbas Nasir said Gillani had "invented" the story. "My understanding of history is that ZAB was barely allowed to see Begum Nusrat Bhutto and BB and for no more than a few minutes through the cell bars. Now Musa Gillany invents a ZAB convo from near the gallows with Mufti Mahmood and Kausar Niazi. @Fiza_Gilani embarrassing."

Former BBC Urdu social media editor Tahir Imran Mian accused Gillani of concocting a "fictitious" story out of "thin air" to support his "bigotry". "Ali Musa Gillani, a PPP MNA elect concocts a fictitious story out of thin air to support his bigotry. Feeding the divisive propaganda against already persecuted Ahmadiyya minority. Following on footsteps of Sherry Rehman, Raja Pervez Ashraf who publicly celebrated 2nd amendment."

User Alphasays said Gillani should be ashamed of "targeting" a minority to run an election campaign.

Abu Khaisma, another user, wondered how PPP activist Nayab Jan would "spin" Gillani's comments.

User Amir Mehmood commented under saying while all political parties routinely disagreed with one another, all stood united when it came to proliferating hate against Ahmadis. How wonderful, he said, would it have been if they showed unity on something positive instead.

Abdul Basit, another user, likened the PPP to the far-right party Tehreek-e-Labbaik (TLP).

Climate Change Minister Sherry Rehman, separately, termed Tahir's comments on her celebrating celebrating the Second Amendment as "total canard". "I can’t open this tweet but apparently this account claims I celebrated the above. Total canard."