Pashtun Tahaffuz Movement (PTM) leader Manzoor Ahmed, aka Manzoor Pashteen, was on Saturday refused a boarding pass by a private airline for a flight from Islamabad to Karachi, where his socio-political movement is scheduled to hold a rally on May 13.
Pashteen and three of his associates had booked economy class seats on Serene Air flight ER-501, which was to depart from the newly-built Islamabad International Airport at 10am and reach Karachi at noon, the activist shared.
When Pashteen and his associates reached the Serene Air check-in counter, those accompanying him were issued boarding passes but Pashteen was denied the same on the grounds that his details were "not in the system" and that he wasn't cleared to board the flight.
The Serene Air spokesperson, retired Air Vice Marshal Riaz, confirmed that this was why Pashteen was not allowed to board the flight.
Karachi rally in Sohrab Goth
The PTM rally in Karachi, which seemed to have hit some snags after leaders and Karachi administration appeared unable to reach consensus over the venue, was given the go-ahead by the deputy commissioner on Saturday evening.
Initially, the movement was to hold a rally at Karachi's Jinnah Bagh on Sunday, a day after the PPP's rally at the same venue.
Mohsin Dawar, a close associate of Pashteen's, told Dawn that the PTM leaders were concerned about the setup required for their rally, since the PPP rally would go on till late night, after which the venue would need to be cleaned up and then prepared for the next rally.
He said the PTM had approached the Karachi commissioner to hold the rally in Sohrab Goth instead. However, police and admin officials instead suggested Pipri Ground. Unable to reach consensus on the venue for the rally, talks between both parties are still ongoing, according to both Dawar and police sources.
A police source earlier said that the PTM may be given permission by tonight to hold their rally tomorrow "under certain conditions".
Later on Saturday, the Karachi deputy commissioner issued a no objection certificate (NOC) to the PTM for the rally at a ground situated behind Al Asif Square, Sohrab Goth.
The notification said that permission to hold a rally there is subject to the following conditions:
- No speaker will deliver any speech against the ideology of Pakistan, state of Pakistan, its institutions and any religion
- No political/sectarian/objectionable activitiy/speeches/criticism of institutions shall be allowed which may cause and create hatred amongst various sects or injure feelings of the people
- Effigy flag of any political or religious party shall not be burned
- There shall be no display of arms
- Use of deck/speakers/sound amplifier shall comply with provisions of West Pakistan Amplifier Ordinance 1965
- No main road obstruction and disturbance shall be caused to the general public and traffic
- The organiser is solely reponsible for any mishap and will have to face the legal consequences
- The internal security of the programme is the responsibility of the organisers
- That the applicant (permit holder) shall abide by the orders of the administration and other LEAs
- The organiser shall be personally responsibel to ensure that the timings are strictly adhered to and that the situation remains normal
- The programme will end latest 6:30pm
- The organiser shall have to do video recording of the political gathering and hand it over to the district administration
- The violation of this permission whereof shall be seriously viewed and action will be taken against the organisers within the relevant laws
- The organiser will be held responsible for the violation of terms and conditions of the NOC
- This NOC is liable to be cancelled any time without assigning any reasons and prior notice