Pakistani court orders arrest of cleric over violent rally

A Pakistani court has ordered the arrest of a radical Islamist cleric over a violent rally last November in Islamabad where his followers demanded the removal of a minister over an omitted reference to Islam's Prophet Muhammad in a parliamentary bill.

The order was handed to the police on Tuesday to take into custody Khadim Hussain Rizvi, the head of the Tehreek-i-Labaik Ya Rasool Allah party, and bring him before the court on April 4.

Rizvi is accused of provoking violence and damaging public property when he and his followers camped out on the edge of Islamabad demanding Law Minister Zahid Hamid resign over the omission in the bill.

A police crackdown against the rally failed at the time, forcing authorities to reach a negotiated settlement with Rizvi. Hamid resigned.