KARACHI, Nov 21: People living around Expo Centre, the venue of Ideas 2006, faced trouble in leaving home due to closure of different roads providing safe passage to government dignitaries and foreign delegates on Tuesday.
Besides, hundreds of visitors found Civic Centre and the Gulshan town municipal offices closed and returned. The employees of Sui Southern Gas Company office located on Sir Shah Suleman Road were not allowed to join their duty. Besides, the revenue department office (former DC East office) also remained closed.
“I am unable to get my newly bought car registered as the Civic Centre has been closed for the last two days without any prior announcement,” said a resident of North Nazimabad.
A government official who works in the Civic Centre said: “I and other employees reached the office in the morning but law enforcers did not allow us to enter the Civic Centre. We argued but they did not permit. We waited there for sometime and decided to return,” he added.
Law enforcers were also deployed at rooftops of apartments near the Expo Centre. Residents of road facing apartments were not allowed to use their balconies.
“We have been confined to our homes. If they (government dignitaries) are so scared, they should hold this exhibition somewhere else instead of making public life hell,” a resident of Gulshan-i-Iqbal said.
Due to closure of Sir Shah Suleman Road for traffic, people living in the vicinity of University Road had to take a long route via New Town turning to reach Aga Khan Hospital and Liaquat National Hospital. City police chief Tariq Jamil said 10,000 policemen were deployed from Expo Centre to Club Road for security of the delegates participating in the exhibition. He said police using 200 four-wheelers and 150 motorcycles kept patrolling the area. He said 20 new cars being used for patrolling were hired on rent.
He said special uniform was provided to 1,000 police commandoes, who were deployed at sensitive places. He said payment for uniforms and cars hired on rent would be made through police funds.
However, police sources said town police heads were directed to deduct the expenses incurred on uniform from the salary of those deployed for security. Besides, they said, police had pitched makeshift camps at various places and station house officers of concerned police stations were asked to generate funds on their own to meet expenses of these camps.