South Asians for Human Rights

Promoting Democracy, Upholding Human Rights

RAWALPINDI: The local administration of Rawalpindi has warned organisers and activists of the Tehreek-e-Labaik Ya Rasool Allah to immediately vacate Faizabad where they are staging a sit-in and served them a notice in this regard.

A key official from city district government, Rawalpindi told The News on condition of anonymity on Friday that the notice was issued from the office of Deputy Commissioner Rawalpindi Talat Gondal to Dr Muhammad Asif Ashraf Jalali, who is leading the protest.

In the notice, the local administration has informed protesters that the sit-in is unlawful and is in contempt of court. Legal proceedings and action may therefore be taken against the organisers, leaders and activists. The notice reminds the protesters that in the wake of the current law and order situation and recent terrorist attacks, Section 144 of the CrPC has been imposed in Rawalpindi which bans large assemblies and public gatherings.

It seems that there was no government writ in Rawalpindi and Islamabad as public are facing a very difficult situationfor the last three days. Some activists carrying batons in their hands occupied Faizabad and asked the public to adopt alternative routes to reach their destinations.

The official also said that if protesters did not follow the notice, the local administration will use force to vacate the sit-in venue today (Saturday). The government has already accepted all the demands of protesters but the protesters are creating law and order situation for the last three days, the official said. When asked, an official of the local administration said   that arrangements have been made and officials are waiting for a signal from the high ups.

According to the notice, the protesters have not obtained the mandatory no objection certificate (NOC) and they are also not protesting in the designated place in accordance with the directions of the Islamabad High Court (IHC). It said the sit-in is causing trouble for the people travelling to Islamabad, affecting local businesses and may pose a threat to public property and may also lead to a riot within the city.

Activists and supporters of the Tehreek occupied Faizabad to block all kinds of traffic from all sides for three days. Punjab Metro Authority had also suspended Metro Bus Service for a couple of days to avoid any untoward incident. Reportedly, activists were pelting stones at Metro Bus Service in Faizabad, therefore, the authorities stopped the service for two days.

Meanwhile, The National Commission for Human Rights (NCHR) has taken notice of the difficulties faced by people of Rawalpindi and Islamabad due to the rally and sit-in of Tehreek-e-Labaik Ya Rasool Allah and sought response from the authorities. The NCHR chief Justice (retd) Ali Nawaz Chohan has asked the chief secretary Punjab and chief commissioner Islamabad why no step has been taken so far to normalise traffic in the twin cities.

Updated On: November 11, 2017