Peaceful resolution!

THE decision of the Minister for Law Zahid Hamid to step down has paved the way for peaceful resolution of the deadlock over protest demonstration and occupation of strategically located Faizabad Interchange, blocking effectively all kinds of vehicular traffic in the twin cities. The two sides entered into an agreement the provisions of are lopsided putting almost all the burden on the Government and relieving the violent protestors of any obligations, responsibility of bear consequences of what illegal actions they did during their protest.
The development following civil-military huddle on Sunday where it was agreed to handle the situation peacefully and DG Rangers Punjab was assigned the responsibility to clear the area within a week. One must appreciate Zahid Hamid for his gesture to take the country out of crisis, which was not product of his actions. Much-talked-about change in the law, which has been reversed, was a collective mistake but the Minister fell victim to a propaganda campaign. Now the main question is his safety, which must be ensured by the Government at all costs. Similarly, it is crystal clear that the Government also did not want to go for use of force to vacate the interchange from protestors but it had to take action in the face of court orders and issuance of contempt of court notice to Interior Minister Ahsan Iqbal. It is also quite evident from what happened during few hours of the operation that Police and FC personnel preferred to sustain injuries than using brute force or resorting to firing against the protestors. It is because of this policy of restraint and care that there are more injured personnel of law enforcing agencies than the protestors. No one should accuse the Government of any lapse as far as efforts for peaceful resolution of the stand off or the policy of restraint are concerned. In this backdrop, the provision in the agreement that an Inquiry Board would be formed, taking TLYR on board, to pinpoint those responsible for action of November 25, means the onus of burden has been shifted on the Government, which is regrettable. Anyhow, people would surely heave a sigh of relief that the issue has been resolved and the life has returned to normalcy after a prolonged tense period.

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