RAWALPINDI: Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) is all set to observe former prime minister Benazir Bhutto’s death anniversary by holding the first public gathering in Liaquat Bagh since her assassination there in a gun and bomb attack on Dec 27, 2007.
The venue and all roads leading to Liaquat Bagh have been decorated with PPP flags and portraits of Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, Benazir Bhutto and Bilawal Bhutto Zardari.
PPP Chairperson Bilawal Bhutto Zardari will address the gathering for which party workers and supporters from all over the country continued arriving in the city.
Most of the participants from inner Sindh, KP, Balochistan, Punjab, Gilgit-Baltistan and AJK have already arrived. The party has made arrangements for their stay in local hotels.
More than 50,000 seats have been arranged in the park. The stage and sound system installed in the park are on the pattern of the ones when Ms Bhutto addressed a gathering in Liaquat Bagh on Dec 27, 2007.
Bilawal and other party leaders will address rally
Lahore High Court (LHC)’s Rawalpindi bench on Thursday directed the district administration to provide all facilities and security for the event. However, the PPP has also made its own security arrangements.
PPP parliamentary leader in the Senate Sherry Rehman visited the site and inspected the arrangements.
“After 12 years, the PPP is holding a public meeting and it is an attempt to dispel the perception that the party would not be able to arrange a Jalsa in Rawalpindi,” she told media persons in Liaquat Bagh.
“It will be a sad moment for Bilawal Bhutto to visit the site where his mother was assassinated. It will also be difficult for all Jialays (diehard party workers) to gather at the site and recall the tragic day.”
She said political activities would also start in every nook and corner of the country under the leadership of the PPP.
Even a day before the public meeting all roads around Liaquat Bagh are filled with party workers, she added.
“Chalo Chalo Liaquat Bagh Chalo is chanted throughout the country.” Ms Rehman said inflation had made the life of common man difficult. The PTI government is creating problems for the citizens by increasing utility bills.
“Electricity tariff was increased on Dec 26 and we are opposing the incompetence of the government.”
She said Bilawal Bhutto would end miseries of the people and would fulfil her mother’s promises made with the people of Pakistan.
“The PPP will be active in Punjab and all units of the federation as it is the party which talks about the federation,” she said.
Meanwhile, the PPP women wing and People’s Youth Organisation brought out rallies in different parts of the city. More than 200 youngsters brought out a rally of motorcycles from Faizabad.
The PPP Islamabad women wing also arranged a rally which was led by Uzma Nasir. The rally started from Murree Road and ended at the memorial site outside Liaquat Bagh.
Published in Dawn, December 27th, 2019