Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan on Tuesday backtracked on his decision to include Ahmadis in the National Commission for Minorities.
During a cabinet meeting with his top minister PM Khan approved a memo submitted by Ministry of Religious Affairs & Interfaith Harmony urging the cabinet to exclude Ahmadis due to the “religious and historical sensetivity of the issue.”
The same cabinet on April 29th had ordered the Ministry of Religious Affairs to include the Ahmadis, saying that:
“The Ahmadi community, being a minority in accordance with the constitution of Pakistan, should also be represented in the Commission.”
The decision to give representation to Ahmadis triggered a nationwide backlash against the government. To quell the backlash the Ministry proposed that the cabinet drop its prior decision to include Ahmadis, stating that:
“So far decision at 1(c) is concerned, Ministry proposes that representative of Ahmadi community must not be included in the NCM, given the religious and historical sensitivity of the issue”
The Ahmadis who claim to be Muslim were declared “non-Muslim” in 1974 and have since been severely persecuted for their religious beliefs.