Interior minister survives gun attack

Pakistan Interior Minister Ahsan Iqbal injured in gun attack

Pakistan Interior Minister Ahsan Iqbal injured in gun attack

Punjab chief minister Shahbaz Sharif has sought a report from inspector general (IG) Punjab and has directed the authorities to take action against the culprit.

Interior Minister Ahsan Iqbal, who wounded in an assassination attempt on Sunday in Narowal, is now out of danger, said Ahmed Iqbal, the minister's son. He has been taken into custody.

The Punjab Police also appointed an investigating officer in the case, Mohammad Tariq, on Monday.

The amendment was hastily reversed in 2017 after it was deemed by the previously little-known Islamist group to be blasphemous. Government ministers and resistance leaders resisted the attack.

Last year, Tehreek-e Labbaik organized so-called anti-blasphemy demonstrations across Pakistan.

Iqbal, a champion of Pakistan's much-persecuted religious minorities, pushed for a negotiated settlement to the controversy.

Ahsan Iqbal, 59, of the Pakistan Muslim League, has had surgery but his life is not thought to be in danger. The party almost splintered a year ago as many politicians patronized by the custodians of shrines in the countryside announced their resignations from the party.

"He is stable now". "But he will remain in the ICU for two days".

Pakistani Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi condemned the attack and ordered the police to trace the planners behind the attack.

Ziauddin Yousafzai, the father of Pakistani Nobel Peace Prize victor Malala Yousafzai, called the attempted assassination a "bad omen for upcoming general elections that are supposed to be free, fair, and transparent". He is also the minister for planning, development and reforms.

Many of its supporters say PML-N, despite repeated denials, wants to ease the blasphemy laws. "Just spoke to him [Iqbal] and he is in high spirits", Sharif said.

Despite the setbacks facing the PML-N, the party has won a string of recent by-elections, proving it will likely remain a force in the vote.

The party was born out of a protest movement supporting Mumtaz Qadri, a bodyguard of the governor of Punjab who gunned down his boss in 2011 over his call to relax Pakistan's draconian blasphemy laws.

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