19 Nov 2020
Kadhim Hussain Rizvi, who was founder of Tehreek-e-Labbaik Pakistan,passed away at the age of 54, his political party confirmed on Thursday night.
TLP is a hardline religious political organization founded in 2015 which is known to protest against any change to Pakistan’s blasphemy law.
The cause of his demise wasn’t immediately clear.
According to the party’s spokesperson, Hamza, the TLP chief had been experiencing difficulty in breathing and was running a fever since yesterday.
The spokesperson added that Rizvi was at his madressah on Multan Road when his condition deteriorated on Thursday evening. He was subsequently rushed to the Farooq Hospital in Lahore, where he was pronounced dead on arrival. His body was being transported to his residence.
The firebrand cleric made his last public appearance at a sit-in staged by thousands of TLP followers at Islamabad’s Faizabad interchange to protest the publication of blasphemous caricatures of Prophet Muhammad (Peace Be Upon Him) in France.
Rizvi was among the most prominent leaders to have led the violent three-day protests across the country against the acquittal of Aasia Bibi, a Christian woman whose blasphemy conviction was overturned by the Supreme Court in 2018.
Weeks later, he was arrested from his seminary in Lahore on Nov 24, 2018, after refusing to call off a protest sit-in that threatened to close down the capital.
He was charged with sedition and terrorism charges for incendiary speeches against the state and for inciting violence in the country during the protests.