Qayyum for legislation to stop sit-ins at public places


ISLAMABAD : Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) Senator Lt Gen (Retd) Abdul Qayyum has said the legislation should be made to stop holding protests or sit-ins at public places which caused disruption of peace or violence.

The sit-in held by a religious party at Faizabad Interchange had created inconvenience for the people of twin cities of Islamabad and Rawalpindi, he said talking to PTV.

He said the commuters had also faced many difficulties due to blockade of transport on the main thoroughfares, besides stoppage of the Metro Bus service. The sit-in in the Capital had also presented a bad image of the country internationally, he added.

Replying to a question, Senator Qayyum said the government had launched operations Zarb-e-Azb and Radul Fasad to eliminate the menace of terrorism from the country.

Earlier, Interior Minister Ahsan Iqbal constituted a three-member committee to review sit-in operation at Faizabad.

The committee, led by the Secretary Interior, would analyze whether or not there was any improvement in police capabilities in handling the sit-ins since 2014, a statement issued has said.

The minister, according to a statement, suggested that a special team, comprising 1,000 police officers, should also be formed immediately to deal with protests and sit-ins, and stressed the need for fulfilling all the requirements of Islamabad Police without any delay.

Ahsan Iqbal urged that under the light of Islamabad High Court decision, the practice of sit-ins in the Federal Capital should be stopped in future. “The recent sit-ins tarnished image of the country at international level,” he said.

It may be noted the three-week long sit-in was called off early on Monday after protesters reached an agreement with the government.

The agreement was reached following the voluntary resignation of Law Minister Zahid Hamid. The Faizabad Interchange, the site of the sit-in, has been cleared of containers with traffic partially restored.

The vicinity was completely cleared late on Monday night, while 25 protesters, detained at different police stations, were also released from custody after the two sides reached an agreement.

Orignally published by NNI

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