Punjab govt reinstates Chohan as information minister
LAHORE: The Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) government in Punjab has reinstated Fayyazul Hassan Chohan as the information months after he was removed from the post following his outburst against the Hindu community.
Chohan is given the ministry in addition to his current portfolio of colonies department, according to a notification issued on Monday.
The foul-mouthed leader was taken back in the provincial cabinet in July amid uproar from the opposition parties.
In a resolution tabled in the Punjab Assembly, the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) called the government’s move of giving Chohan colonies ministry ‘shameful’, since he had displayed religious prejudices and given controversial statements against the four million Hindus in Pakistan.
During his six months as information minister, Chohan drew flak from political leaders including those belonging to the ruling party as he disrespected journalists, actors and politicians.
However, the act that triggered his ouster from the cabinet was using foul language against Hindus while criticising India in the aftermath of Pulwama attack.
“You cow urine-drinking people, listen to me… we are Muslims and we have the flag of Hazrat Ali (RA) and Hazrat Umar (RA)’s bravery. You don’t have that flag,” he had said in a media talk in March. “Idol-worshippers” shouldn’t operate under the delusion that they are better than Pakistan, he added.
Besides opposition politicians, leaders of the ruling party also slammed chohan for passing derogatory remarks against the country’s Hindu population with Asad Umar reminding the provincial minister that “Hindus are as much a part of the fabric of the nation” as he is and reminded him that, “Quaid-e-Azam’s whole struggle was for a country free of discrimination”.
Human Rights Minister, Shireen Mazari also criticised her colleague and said: “Our Hindu citizens have given sacrifices for their country … we cannot condone any form of bigotry or spread of religious hatred.”
Special Assistant to the PM Naeemul Haque had warned Chohan of ‘strict action’, saying “nonsense” will not be tolerated from a senior member of the government or from anyone else.