Pakistan Awami Tehreek (PAT) chief Dr Tahirul Qadri on Saturday announced his retirement from Pakistani politics and from his post as the party’s chairman.
In a message shared via video link in Lahore, Dr Qadri said: “I am retiring from Pakistani politics, political activities and from my post as PAT chairman.”
Dr Qadri said he was not handing over leadership of PAT to his sons, but transferring power to the party’s council.
“Our legal battle for the Model Town incident will continue till my last breath,” Dr Qadri said, adding: “That is not a matter of politics, it is a matter of faith.”
On June 17, 2014, at least 14 people were killed and 100 others injured when police opened fire to disperse protesting activists of the PAT during an ‘anti-encroachment’ operation outside the residence of Dr Qadri.
Later the same year, the PAT chief led an over two-month-long protest sit-in in Islamabad along with Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) chairman (now prime minister) Imran Khan.