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Found 21 results

  1. Interior Minister Ahsan Iqbal speaking to journalists in Tharparker. Photo: Geo News THARPARKER: Interior Minister Ahsan Iqbal said on Friday that political opponents should shun politics of sit-in and should play their role in the progress of the country. While speaking to journalists, Iqbal said that Pakistan is competing against the economies of India and other countries of the region. "There are no sit-ins happening in the other countries of the region," he added. "There are no sit-ins happening in India nor Bangladesh". He said that the successful execution of Thar coal project shows that if we work in unity we can achieve success. "Thar's coal can provide more energy than Saudi?s oil," the interior minister said. "We have decided to include Thar coal project in CPEC". Responding to a question, the minister said that Pakistan principally stood with Palestine in the United Nations General Assembly yesterday. "Pakistan is an independent country and it has its independent foreign policy," Iqbal said. "The entire world supported joint resolution put forwarded by Turkey and Pakistan. We have a deep bond with the people of Palestine." The interior minister said that the US should review its foreign policies and should see why the international superpower is being isolated in the international arena.
  2. Jamaat-e-Islami (JI) chief Sirajul Haq pictured while addressing the attendees of a long march held earlier today in the federal capital. Photo: Geo News ISLAMABAD: Jamaat-e-Islami (JI) chief Sirajul Haq on Tuesday said his party would stage a sit-in in Islamabad if the government fails to go ahead with the merger of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) and the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA). "Residents of tribal areas want their rights, they want a merger with KP, and they want the abolition of Frontier Crimes Regulations (FCR)," Haq said while addressing attendees of a long march in the federal capital's Faizabad vicinity. He announced a protest in the federal capital on December 31 if the government fails to go ahead with the merger of FATA with KP. "Residents of FATA are participating in a long march toward Islamabad, particularly the National Assembly with the basic objective of love for Pakistan and hatred for a system based on injustice, oppression, and FCR," he said. The JI Amir further said that people living in the tribal areas want their offspring to be educated. FATA reforms: Opposition walks out over govt's failure to table bill in NA PM calls parliamentary leaders for meeting on Friday; opposition parties form negotiating committee The opposition staged a walkout in the National Assembly earlier today after the government failed to table a bill pertaining to reforms in the tribal areas. During the assembly session, chaired by Speaker Ayaz Sadiq, Opposition Leader Khursheed Shah criticised the callous attitude of the government regarding the bill. He remarked that the government was not serious about the implementation of the FATA Reforms Bill. "Seventy years have passed, we must work towards solving the problems of people of FATA," he said, adding ?we hope that FATA Reforms Bill is part of the assembly agenda tomorrow [Wednesday].? ?Our stance was very clear, if you don?t do this [table the bill] then it is an insult of the Parliament,? he said, adding ?we want the Parliament to be respected.? The opposition leader further said that they will continue to stage walkouts till a clarification is given for delaying the matter. FATA Reforms Bill The recommendations to bring FATA at par with the rest of the country were approved at the Cabinet meeting on FATA reforms on March 2. Once FATA is made part of KP, the province's share in the National Finance Commission will increase, as three percent will be earmarked for the region. Opposition irked by govt failure to present FATA Reforms Bill in NA The KP Assembly had adopted a resolution on December 14, 2016, in favour of merging FATA with KP that would help rehabilitate and reconstruct the infrastructure including roads, communications, power lines, water supply, education and health facilities.
  3. Captain (retd) Safdar speaks to the media outside the accountability court. Photo: Geo News ISLAMABAD: Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz leader Captain (retd) Safdar said on Tuesday that the agreement between the government and a religious group taking out a protest sit-in in the capital was made ?somewhere else?. Speaking with journalists after his hearing at the accountability court, Safdar, who is also the son-in-law of former premier Nawaz Sharif, said: ?had the agreement been with the government, the protesters would not have waited for 22 days. The agreement was made somewhere else,? he said. ?It is unfortunate as in Pakistan, energy savers are in Lahore but the UPS is in Rawalpindi.? He added that there was not only one hand; but ?many shoulders, hands, ladders, cranes? behind the religious group?s protest against the government. Without specifically pointing towards any individual or institution, he said that prime ministers like Moeen Qureshi and Shaukat Aziz are wanted here but from now onwards such precedents won't continue. The PML-N leader said that Nawaz was ousted from the premiership because he is ?Made in Pakistan?, adding that as it is against the Charter of Democracy, he will not say anything against Pakistan Peoples Party chief Bilawal Bhutto Zardari. ?PPP is a democratic party, I won't say anything against Bilawal,? he said.
  4. In its written order on November 27 in the case, the court had observed that it has serious reservations on the terms and mannerism of the agreement reached between the federal government and the protesters at Faizabad to end the sit-in ISLAMABAD: The Islamabad High Court will resume today (Monday) hearing the case against the Islamabad sit-in by religious groups which brought the capital to a standstill for over 20 days. Workers of a religious party had been protesting against the government at Faizabad Interchange of the capital for around three weeks. In its written order on November 27 in the petition filed by a religious group, the court had observed that it has serious reservations on the terms and mannerism of the agreement reached between the federal government and the protesters at Faizabad to end the sit-in. The director-general of the Intelligence Bureau (IB) was directed to submit a report on how the protesters of the sit-in procured guns, tear gas shells, masks to protect themselves from tear-gas, grenades, weapons and other instruments. The DG IB was further instructed to submit a report showing the reasons for the failure of the operation. The court has also asked the chief commissioner to submit his report on the conduct of the operation and reasons for failure. Last hearing Interior Minister Ahsan Iqbal had been summoned in the last hearing on November 27 on a contempt notice over the government's failure to implement court orders directing the shifting of the Faizabad protest to the Parade Ground. IHC orders protesters to abide by the law, end Islamabad sit-in Justice Shaukat Aziz Siddiqui directed the protesters' counsel to abide by the law, end public's miseries During proceedings, the chief commissioner informed the judge that the sit-in will be cleared as the two sides have reached an agreement. The judge then directed the counsel to read out the judgment and questioned the guarantee of the sit-in ending. The minister, who arrived later, also informed the court that the protest will formally end today after the announcement is made in a formal press conference. The judge remarked that the minister has insulted the city administration [due to the botched operation]. You (Iqbal) have done nothing than surrender before sit-in protesters, he added. He also asked where has [Operation] Raddul Fasaad gone; did no one see any fasaad [chaos] here? Justice Siddiqui also spoke regarding the presence of tear-gas shells and other weapons with the protesters and questioned how were these weapons obtained by the protesters. The judge further stated that the protesters had verbally abused judges and asked why their apology is not in the agreement. Referring to the agreement?s clause of dismissing cases against the protesters, the judge wondered how persons against whom cases are filed under the Anti-Terrorism Act can be pardoned. Inquiring about Haq?s report, the judge commented that this is not any Khadim or group's issue but an issue of the Ummah. The court also wondered how the army could become an arbitrator between the government and those who flouted the law when they have to obey the order of the elected government. There was no role of any intelligence agency behind the sit-in protest, a representative of an agency informed the court. He stated that there were only two ways to control the situation and they opted for the peaceful way to resolve the protest after the court?s order. Army has the mandate to work under your (Iqbal's) instructions, the judge remarked. Army should remain under its constitutional role and not play the role of an arbitrator, added the justice. ?They (army) came as witness, not arbitrator,? clarified Iqbal. He also said that the Rangers were deployed alongside the Islamabad administration. ?The army is our pride. Our fathers, sons and brothers are in the army. In case of danger, we will stand side by side with the army,? further stated Siddiqui. The attorney general was also summoned by the court for the next hearing. The judge then adjourned the hearing until December 4 (today) and directed the submission of the written agreement in court. The agreement between government and protesters Details of the agreement reached between the government and protesters in Islamabad The court in an earlier hearing had also directed the interior secretary to submit Senator Raja Zafarul Haq's report before the court. The ruling party has formed an inquiry committee under Haq that will identify those responsible for the 'clerical error' that led to the change in the oath of the Finality of Prophethood for electoral candidates.
  5. LAHORE: Protesters of a religious group ended their seven-day-long sit-in on Lahore's Mall Road late Friday, after they reached an agreement with the Punjab government. Holding a press conference here, Ashraf Asif Jalali thanked participants for staging the sit-in for seven consecutive days following the agreement. He said the names of those responsible for the change in the amendment to the Finality of Prophethood declaration for electoral candidates, in the Elections Act 2017, will be made public by December 20. Jalali also claimed the government has provided them a list of martyrs, wounded and arrested protesters. He further said that a committee will be formed with regard to the resignation of Punjab Law Minister Rana Sanaullah, warning, "If the agreement isn't acted upon in a month's time, then we will again take to streets."
  6. LAHORE: The division in Tehreek-e-Labbaik, the religious group which recently held a protest sit-in at Islamabad and all over the country against the government, has become bitterly public. Speaking in a programme at a private media channel Wednesday night, both Khadim Hussain Rizvi and Dr Ashraf Asif Jalali ? the senior representatives of the religious party ? claimed themselves to be the real and only leaders of the group. Both the leaders denounced the party factions led by the other. Khadim alleged that the Lahore sit-in led by Jalali is an attempt to take credit for the successful Islamabad sit-in. ?He should have wrapped up the sit-in after the agreement, but he (Jalali) has a disease of taking credit. And we don?t have any treatment of such diseases,? Khadim said. Sit-in continues in Lahore despite Faizabad agreement Protesters in Lahore demand resignation of Punjab Law Minister Rana Sanaullah In response to the head of the party?s opposing faction, Dr Jalali said that Molvi Khadim demanded the resignation of the entire cabinet on the ground of killings of party workers, why then he settled on only the resignation of Federal Law Minister Zahid Hamid. Jalali also leveled the accusation that one of the leaders in Molvi Khadim?s party has committed Kuffar, in response to it, the cleric interestingly held the opinion that one should not raise questions on the faith of others on small matters. Islamabad Red Zone being cleared of containers Meanwhile, Islamabad?s Red Zone is being cleared from containers after the end of the sit-in. Nadra and Kashmir Highway Chowk has been opened for traffic. However, where the residents of Islamabad have taken a sigh of relief; the Jalali-led faction?s sit-in outside Punjab Assembly at Mall Road, Lahore has entered its sixth day today. The Jalali-led Tehreek-e-Labbaik is demanding the resignation of Punjab Law Minister Rana Sanaullah.
  7. ISLAMABAD: Following the resignation of Federal Law Minister Zahid Hamid, the government and Islamabad protesters have reached an agreement, sources told Geo News. Workers of religious parties will make the announcement to end the sit-in at 7am today. According to the agreement, six arrested workers of the religious parties will have to be released, Federal Law Minister Zahid Hamid voluntarily stepped down from his position late on Sunday. Hamid has tendered his resignation to Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, which will be accepted later in the day.
  8. ISLAMABAD: Pakistan Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Qamar Javed Bajwa spoke with Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi over the sit-in in Islamabad. ?COAS telephoned PM. Suggested to handle Isb Dharna peacefully avoiding violence from both sides as it is not in national interest and cohesion,? DG ISPR Major General Asif Ghafoor tweeted on Saturday. A policeman was martyred during clashes with protesters after an operation to clear Faizabad interchange commenced early Saturday morning. Police said the deceased suffered a deadly blow to the head in I-8/4 sector as protesters pelted stones at security officials during the operation. Islamabad operation: Policeman martyred, over 170 people injured in clashes Helicopters, drones, ambulances, and prison vans on the scene; dozens of protesters detained Heavy contingents of police, FC and Rangers were deployed to the interchange, where they are using tear gas and water cannons to disperse the protesters after the capital was paralysed due to the sit-in which has been ongoing for almost three weeks. According to reports, dozens of protesters have been detained. The operation was commenced on court orders following the expiry of the midnight deadline set by the district administration. Prison vans, ambulances are at the site, while helicopters and drones are being used by the authorities for aerial surveillance. Around 8,000 security officials are taking part in the operation, including 3,000 FC personnel.
  9. The protest has entered its 19th day despite orders from both Supreme Court and IHC against the sit-in ISLAMABAD: The Islamabad High Court will resume hearing in the Faizabad protest case today after it issued showcause notices on Monday to the authorities concerned for failing to disperse the protesters. The protest has entered its 19th day despite orders from both Supreme Court and IHC against the sit-in. In the last hearing, attended by Interior Minister Ahsan Iqbal, Justice Shaukat Siddiqui asked why court orders to end the protest are not being implemented. Islamabad administration decides to close streetlights on Faizabad interchange Administration also discussed the hardships being faced by the citizens of the twin cities The minister, taking sole responsibility for the failure to end the sit-in, said he wants to resolve the matter peacefully and asked the court for more time. The court also issued showcause notices for contempt of court to the interior secretary, chief commissioner and Islamabad inspector general. "I believe we?ll be able to bring the protesters to our side," said Iqbal after the hearing. Court expresses displeasure As the hearing began on Monday, Justice Siddiqui expressed reservations saying that the government did not implement his order to clear the protest by 10am on Saturday despite his clear-cut directions to the local administration. The judge said that he will issue a ?contempt of court? order in this regard and ordered the interior ministry's top officials to be present in court today. Commuters in the twin cities continue to face hardship as the protest sit-in at Faizabad Interchange, linking the main Islamabad-Rawalpindi route, by religious parties enters its fifteenth day today. Sources said the daily deployment of police and paramilitary personnel is costing the government Rs5 million every day. Hearing the petition filed by Maulana Allah Wasaya, a member of the protesting group, against the amendments to the clauses related to the finality of Prophethood in the Elections Act, 2017, Justice Siddiqui on November 16 remarked that the petition will be taken up on the condition of ending the sit-in. The Supreme Court also took notice of the sit-in on Tuesday and sought replies from the relevant government quarters.
  10. Vehicles at a standstill on 9th Avenue due to the Faizabad sit-in. Photo: INP ISLAMABAD: The sit-in at Faizabad Interchange entered the 18th day on Thursday, while responses from quarters concerned will be heard in the Supreme Court later in the day. A day earlier, at least four security personnel were injured when the protesters resorted to pelting stones at security forces deployed in the area. Subsequently, four FC and police personnel, including SP Saddar Amir Niazi, were injured. The protest has resulted in severe issues for residents of the capital and Rawalpindi who face traffic jams and mobility issues on a daily basis. At least two casualties due to ambulances being unable to cross the protesters have also been reported. Tensions rise at Islamabad protest, four security personnel injured Four FC and police personnel, including SP Saddar Aim Niazi, were injured The Supreme Court took notice of the sit-in on Tuesday and sought replies from the relevant government quarters. The apex court has sought a detailed report on what measures were taken by the government to safeguard the rights of the public and adjourned the hearing until Thursday. In his remarks, Justice Qazi Faez Isa asked which Shariah (Islamic law) permits obstruction of people's routes and use of foul language. Talks between the government and protesters on Saturday and then on Monday failed with no breakthrough in sight as protest leaders continue to demand the resignation of Federal Minister for Law and Justice Zahid Hamid. The religious parties have been protesting against the change in the finality of Prophethood oath in the law when the government passed the Elections Act 2017 last month. The change, dubbed a clerical error by the government, was immediately fixed as an amendment was passed later. They also want responsibility fixed on other officials involved in the incident.
  11. The protest has resulted in severe issues for the residents of the capital and Rawalpindi who face traffic jams and mobility issues on a daily basis ISLAMABAD: Protesters belonging to a religious group continued their sit-in for the 17th consecutive day on Wednesday, blocking Faizabad Interchange despite a notice by the Supreme Court. The protest has resulted in severe issues for residents of the capital and Rawalpindi who face traffic jams and mobility issues on a daily basis. At least two casualties due to ambulances being unable to cross the protesters have also been reported. The Supreme Court took notice of the sit-in on Tuesday and sought replies from the relevant government quarters. The apex court has sought a detailed report on what measures were taken by the government to safeguard the rights of the public and adjourned the hearing until Thursday. In his remarks, Justice Qazi Faez Isa asked which Shariah (Islamic law) permits obstruction of people's routes and use of foul language. Talks between the government and protesters on Saturday and then on Monday failed with no breakthrough in sight as protest leaders continue to demand the resignation of Federal Minister for Law and Justice Zahid Hamid. The government, however, has formed another committee under senior cleric Pir Haseenuddin Shah for negotiations with the protesters and to suggest a comprehensive solution to the problem. On Tuesday, Shah asked the government for more authority so he could make decisions independently. Interior Minister Ahsan Iqbal meanwhile has emphasised on a peaceful solution through talks while stressing that ?all options are available? to disperse the sit-in. Following a meeting of government representatives and protest leaders on Monday, Iqbal again expressed hope for a peaceful resolution of the issue. "We all agree that this issue should be resolved as soon as possible in a peaceful manner. Pakistan cannot be affected by any kind of bloodletting,' said the interior minister. The meeting, after its conclusion also issued a joint statement, which stated that there is absolutely no room for error in the Khatam-e-Nabuwat clause and a committee, formed with PML-N leader Raja Zafar-ul-Haq in the chair, will identify those responsible for the mistake and the change in the oath. Supreme Court takes notice of Islamabad sit-in, seeks response from government Islamabad sit-in entered its 16th day today as talks have failed to break the deadlock between the protesters and the government The religious parties have been protesting against the change in the finality of Prophethood oath in the law when the government passed the Elections Act 2017 last month. The change, dubbed a clerical error by the government, was immediately fixed as an amendment was passed later. They also want responsibility fixed on other officials involved in the incident. The protest has disrupted life in the capital and Rawalpindi, causing inconvenience as well as at least two reported casualties due to ambulances being unable to cross the protesters. Protest in Karachi The religious group also began its protest in Karachi on November 19 at the Numaish Chowrangi, causing severe traffic jams in the Saddar area. The group had announced to take out a rally from Numaish Chowrangi to Tibet Centre but then proceeded to only hold a sit-in near Numaish and blocking roads leading to Saddar. The protesters, however, moved away from the roads to the sidewalks early today, which led to hurdles placed by authorities to be removed. The protesters said that the sit-in in the city will continue as long as the Islamabad protest continues.
  12. ISLAMABAD: The protest that has brought the capital to a standstill has entered its 16th day after various rounds of talks between the government and protesters ended in a stalemate. Talks held on Saturday and then on Monday failed with no breakthrough in sight as protest leaders continue to demand the resignation of Federal Minister for Law and Justice Zahid Hamid. The government, however, has formed another committee under senior cleric Pir Hussainuddin for negotiations with the protesters and to suggest a comprehensive solution to the problem. Following a meeting of government representatives and protest leaders on Monday, Interior Minister Ahsan Iqbal again expressed hope of peaceful resolution of the issue. "We all agree that this issue should be resolved as soon as possible in a peaceful manner. Pakistan cannot be affected by any kind of bloodletting,' said the interior minister. Operation, though last option, is possible anytime against Islamabad sit-in: Iqbal Religious parties have been camped at Faizabad Interchange in protest against the government for almost two weeks The meeting, after its conclusion also issued a joint statement, which stated that there is absolutely no room for error in the Khatam-e-Nabuwat clause and a committee, formed with PML-N leader Raja Zafar-ul-Haq in the chair, will identify those responsible for the mistake and the change in the oath. Iqbal further said that the committee formed under Haq will expedite the report and present it once completed He added that Khatam-e-Nabuwat is the basis of Islam and the wish of the government is to resolve the issue "in hours, not days'. "For the sake of the Ummah, the religion, and the country, we have to peacefully resolve the sit-in." On Sunday, the interior minister had said that all options are available for dispersing the Islamabad protest, adding that a security operation is the last option as the government will try to avoid bloodshed. The Islamabad High Court had given the government until 10am, November 18 to remove the protesters blocking the Faizabad Interchange 'with force if need be' but the government did not do so and instead opted for negotiations to find a peaceful way out. The religious parties have been protesting against the change in the finality of Prophethood oath in the law when the government passed the Elections Act 2017 last month. The change, dubbed a clerical error by the government, was immediately fixed as an amendment was passed later. They also want responsibility fixed on other officials involved in the incident. The protest has disrupted life in the capital and Rawalpindi, causing inconvenience as well as at least two reported casualties due to ambulances being unable to cross the protesters.
  13. Activists of a religious group blocking the highway. Photo: AFP ISLAMABAD: Commuters in the twin cities continue to face hardship as the protest sit-in at Faizabad Interchange, linking the main Islamabad- Rawalpindi route, by religious parties enters its fifteenth day today. Interior Minister Ahsan Iqbal has called an emergency meeting of religious scholars belonging to all schools of thought over the ongoing protest. The consultative meeting, to be held today, is the latest effort on behalf of the government to bring the protest to a peaceful end. Iqbal, Pakistan Muslim League-N leader Raja Zafarul Haq and State Minister for Religious Affairs Pir Aminul Hasnaat have previously met a number of protest leaders in view of reaching a breakthrough to end the sit-in. Operation, though last option, is possible anytime against Islamabad sit-in: Iqbal Religious parties have been camped at Faizabad Interchange in protest against the government for almost two weeks The interior minister in his press conference on Sunday said that all options are available for dispersing the Islamabad protest, adding that a security operation is the last option as the government will try to avoid bloodshed. Addressing the media alongside State Minister for Religious Affairs, Iqbal had said the government will go "to any extent" to resolve the issue, including a security operation, adding that protesters blocking the Faizabad Interchange are engaging in a propaganda to incite emotions of the people. "Our forces have the capability to clear the area but we are keeping the operation as the last option. This is not a sign of weakness but we are doing this out of respect [for the matter of finality of Prophethood]." Interior minister calls emergency meeting of scholars over Islamabad protest The consultative meeting is the government's latest effort to bring the protest to an amicable end The protest has nothing to do with religion or religious demands and "such organisations" take these steps to advance ahead of elections, he said. "The protesters demand that Law Minister Zahid Hamid should step down; however, there is no proof that he is responsible for the mistake. A committee has been formed in this regard which will probe the matter so there is no justification for the protest," he said.
  14. Religious group protestors blocked Faizabad Interchange. Photo: AFP ISLAMABAD: In what appears to be a blatant challenge to the writ of the state, the ongoing sit-in of religious groups at Faizabad Interchange enters its twelfth day, despite the Islamabad High Court?s Thursday order to end it immediately. Meanwhile, the district magistrate in a letter to the organisers of the protest stated that the administration will now be compelled to use strict action as the continuance of sit-in is now being considered a contempt of court. IHC orders protesters to abide by the law, end Islamabad sit-in Justice Shaukat Aziz Siddiqui directed the protesters' counsel to abide by the law, end public's miseries Two religious parties have been camped at the key route linking Islamabad and Rawalpindi for nearly two weeks in protest against the government's change, and then reversal, of the finality of Prophethood oath for lawmakers. On Thursday, hearing the petition filed by Maulana Allah Wasaya against the amendments to the clauses related to the finality of Prophethood in the Elections Act, 2017, Justice Shaukat Aziz Siddiqui remarked that the petition will be taken up on the condition of ending the sit-in. He directed the petitioner's counsel to abide by the law and end the sit-in so the public's miseries can end. The judge observed further that the young, elderly, employees, and students are being adversely affected due to the protest. The petitioner?s counsel wants the government to make public the report of the inquiry committee headed by Senator Raja Zafarul Haq. The hearing was then adjourned until November 29. In a written order issued later, the judge asked the government why it failed to control the situation and allow the protesters to occupy Faizabad Interchange instead of directing them to the designated venue for protests ? Parade Ground. The Islamabad police chief and chief commissioner, as well as an interior ministry official, have been summoned in person at the next hearing.
  15. A view of the protest shared on Twitter on November 8. Photo: Adeel Bashir/Twitter ISLAMABAD: Vexed by a prolonged sit-in at the Faizabad intersection by activists of religious groups, which has led the administration to close major roads by placing shipping containers, residents of the capital demanded immediate legislation to ban such processions. They also asked the Supreme Court to take a suo motu notice of their misery for ensuring corrective measures by the administration. Life in Islamabad?s suburban areas and Rawalpindi has been paralysed for around a week due to the occupation of the Faizabad Interchange by Tehreek-i-Labaik Yah Rasool Allah Pakistan and Sunni Tehreek Pakistan and the road blockades created by the administration across the city to prevent the deterioration law and order situation. The groups want the government to punish those responsible for changing the wording of the oath regarding the finality of Prophethood taken by lawmakers. The government had immediately fixed the 'clerical error' by passing another amendment. The controversy had arisen when the ruling party had passed amendments to the Election Act 2017 in October. NA restores Khatm-i-Naboowat declaration in election law to original form NA unanimously passes amendments to Election Bill 2017 after govt admitted a 'clerical error' in Khatm-i-Naboowat declaration form Most roads connecting Islamabad and Rawalpindi remain choked leaving motorists and commuters frustrated in long queues for hours. Also, the Metro Bus Service, which covers key areas of the twin cities and is used by around 120,000 people daily, has been partially suspended for security reasons to the inconvenience of commuters. The residents complained about the use of roads by political and religious groups for rallies and said such processions caused immense misery. They said political and religious parties should stop using roads and public places to advance their agendas and if they don?t, the government should ban such rallies to the convenience of the people, especially road users. The residents also regretted the death of a child needing immediate medical attention after being stuck in traffic jams due to the current Faizabad sit-in. "Religious and politics are all about serving the people and therefore, clerics and politicians should prove it by their actions," said Sikandar Zaman, who commutes between the twin cities daily. Another commuter, Alamgir Jan, criticised the administration for allowing a 'handful' people to hold the two cities hostage for so many days. He said the administration should act against protesters challenging its writ without delay to ease the suffering of people, especially road users. Shukriya Khan, a student, called for legislation to ban the use of roads for taking out rallies by religious and political groups. She also said the Supreme Court chief justice should step in by taking a suo motu notice of the sit-in and road blockades as a human rights case and ordering corrective steps by the administration for the relief of the residents. The commuters complained that due to the partial suspension of Metro Bus Service, they had no option but to use either slow-moving minibuses or fast taxis to reach their respective destinations and that cabbies overcharged them.
  16. Rashid addresses media during a visit to the constituency LAHORE: Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) leader Yasmin Rashid on Thursday said the party has various options, including holding a sit-in, if its concerns over NA-120 by-poll are not addressed. Addressing media while visiting the constituency, Rashid demanded that the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) take notice of the violation of code of conduct by the ruling party. ECP is not independent, says PTI before NA-120 by-polls PTI has not been provided with updated voter lists, says party leaders She said that the party has registered its concerns with the ECP on issues like pre-poll rigging and polling scheme. The PTI leader criticised Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz for not paying heed to the needs of the constituency?s residents, saying PML-N should have started development here before the announcement of the polling schedule. The party has expressed similar concerns, saying the ECP is not independent and works under the incumbent government.
  17. Chairs and other equipment have been transferred to Lahore's Mall Road ahead of the sit-in LAHORE: Preparations continued for Pakistan Awami Tehreek (PAT) sit-in at Mall Road?s Istanbul Chowk on Wednesday, despite the Lahore High Court?s orders denying permission for Dr Tahir-ul-Qadri-led sit-in. The Lahore High Court and the city administration earlier this week barred PAT from making arrangements for a sit-in announced by party chief Tahir-ul Qadri. However, PAT maintained that whether it received permission or not, the rally would be held as per schedule. LHC, local admin deny permission for PAT sit-in PAT announced a sit-in at Mall Road despite the city administration not granting the permission PAT leader Noorullah Siddiqui said on Tuesday the court would hear the case again and the party?s lawyers would appear before the court. He said the sit-in would be held by those affected by the Model Town incident and that it would be a peaceful protest, not a rally. Earlier today, Qadri?s container along with other equipment was transferred to Istanbul Chowk ahead of the scheduled sit-in. Awami Muslim League chief Sheikh Rashid reached Lahore for the occasion, while PML-Q also lent its support to PAT for the sit-in. In 2016, Qadri led a sit-in in Rawalpindi, demanding justice for families of Model Town victims. Qadri's other sit-in and long march against the government was in 2013, where he accused the government of being corrupt and incompetent.
  18. LAHORE: The Lahore High Court and city administration denied on Tuesday permission to hold a sit-in on Mall Road by Tahir-ul Qadri-led Pakistan Awami Tehreek. The PAT had announced a sit-in at Mall Road on Wednesday despite the city administration not granting the permission. The petitioner Naeem Mir, who is also leader of the traders union, submitted the application to the high court against PAT rally. The applicant stated that the LHC has already banned rallies at the Mall Road. The sit-ins and rallies are hurting businesses and adversely impacting the basic rights of public, said the applicant. Earlier, the local administration denied permission for the rally, stating that Section 144 has been imposed on the Mall Road. Following which the PAT maintained that whether it gets the permission or not the rally will be held as per schedule. The court has also sought answer from Punjab government and PAT in this regard. ?No decision came as yet, will hold protest? PAT leader Noorullah Siddiqui said that the LHC would hear the case again tomorrow and the party?s lawyers would appear before the court. He said that the sit-in isn?t from either the party or the chief, it is from those affected in the Model Town incident. He said that the decision of the court hasn?t come out as yet and it will simply be a peaceful protest not a rally or sit-in. Siddiqui further said that the protest will not be on the Mall Road but in the vicinity, adding that no law violation will take place. The basic purpose of the gathering is to demand justice for the Model Town incident, he added.
  19. LAHORE: Pakistan Awami League chief Dr Tahir ul Qadri announced a sit-in on August 16. The sit-in will take place on Lahore's Mall road.
  20. Families staged sit-in at Shahra-e-Pakistan. Source: Geo News KARACHI: Family members of two suspects killed in an alleged police encounter have ended their sit-in at Shahra-e-Pakistan after negotiations with the local police administration. The protestors claimed that the men killed last night were tailors and were not involved in any criminal activities, whereas, police maintains that the deceased were involved in a number of heists and cases were registered against them. Police further added that both the men were killed in a shootout. Traffic normalised in the surrounding areas only after the protesters dispersed. Separately, MQM-Pakistan leader Farooq Sattar expressed solidarity with the family of an MQM worker allegedly killed yesterday. ?Justice should be given to us. This blood mayhem must stop. compensation should be given to the family of deceased,? he added.
  21. ISLAMABAD: Former SSP Operations Islamabad Muhammad Ali Nekokara, who was suspended during Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf and Pakistan Awami Tehreek?s sit-in in 2014, has been reinstated. The former SSP was suspended during the protest against the federal government from the post of SSP Islamabad. The Establishment Division reinstated him upon directions from Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, following the appeal?s result. The ex-SSP (Operations) Islamabad was dismissed for conveying in writing that the use of force against the protesters of PTI and PAT could result in an incident similar to that of Model Town. The Interior Ministry had in 2014 surrendered Nekokara?s services to the Establishment Division, and he had been denied any salary since then.