ISLAMABAD: The capital administration on Friday issued a show-cause notice to Jamiat Ulema-i-Islam-Fazl (JUI-F) for planning to set up stage on Srinagar Highway by blocking the road in violation of the terms and conditions of the no-objection certificate (NOC) issued to it.

The notice was issued by Deputy Commissioner (DC) Hamza Shafqaat to JUI-F Islamabad emir Maulana Abdul Majeed Hazarvi, asking him to reply within 48 hours otherwise the NOC would be cancelled.

It said according to the terms and conditions of the NOC, the rally planned by the JUI shall not disturb or disrupt fundamental rights of the citizens.

The plan to block Srinagar Highway needs preemptive actions by the district administration to maintain law and order and to protect public rights, it said, adding that hence the organisers were being served show-cause notice, asking why the NOC issued for the public gathering may not be cancelled.

“In consequence of non-compliance of the show-cause notice, the capital administration shall withdraw the NOC of the rally and you shall be responsible for any untoward incident,” the notice said.

Meanwhile, PML-N Islamabad chapter president Dr Tariq Fazal Chaudhry approached the capital administration for issuance of an NOC for the party’s public gathering.

In a letter addressed to the DC, he shared details of the long march plan of the PML-N and the public gathering of the Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM) in Islamabad.

The PML-N’s long march will start on Saturday (today) from Lahore via G.T. Road and Islamabad Expressway and will reach Peshawar Mor, Srinagar Highway, in the evening.

The public gathering will be held at Peshawar Mor on March 28 and will be addressed jointly by the leadership of all PDM component parties.

When contacted, Dr Chaudhry said a meeting was held with the officers of the police and capital administration.

Asked why the PML-N also applied for the NOC as it had already been issued to the JUI-F, he said the NOC was not obtained in the name of the PDM.

Meanwhile, the capital police have suggested to the administration to assign separate routes to the participants of the PTI and the PDM to reach the Parade Ground and H-9, sources in the police said.

They said the suggestion was given after reports collected by the police showed that chances of physical confrontation between the PTI and opposition parties’ workers cannot be ruled out.

Besides, a buffer zone should also be created between the two venues to ensure that there will be no standoff between them.

In this regard, arrangements will be made at Zero Point, Islamabad Expressway from Zero Point to Faizabad, Ninth Avenue from Peshawar Mor to I.J. Principal Road and from Double Road to Faizabad on I.J. Principal Road to set up the buffer zone, the sources said.

Peshawar Mor Underpass and Education Chowk at H-8 have been declared prohibited areas for the general public from March 26.

A contingent of 3,000 officials of Punjab police, 2,000 personnel of FC, 2,000 Rangers, 200 policemen from Azad Kashmir and 400 personnel from Frontier Reserve Police are arriving in the capital. About 3,000 personnel will be deployed from Motorway Chowk to G-9.

Meanwhile, Interior Minister Sheikh Rashid Ahmed chaired a meeting to review arrangements for the public gatherings. Adviser to the Prime Minister on Parliamentary Affairs Babar Awan, the interior secretary and officers of the police and administration of Islamabad and Rawalpindi attended the meeting.

A control room has been established in the interior ministry, Mr Ahmed told the meeting, adding routine life should not be affected due to the public gatherings.

Published in Dawn, March 26th, 2022

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