One week prior to Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf’s (PTI) scheduled public gathering, the Islamabad Capital Territory (ICT) administration has started blocking roads leading to the Red Zone. The district administration has closed Nadra Chowk for traffic by placing concrete blocks as well as containers at D-Chowk in front of Parliament House, Serena Chowk, Evacuee Trust building and in some other parts of the city to block all roads leading to the Red Zone ahead of PTI’s November 30 rally.
The police have been tasked to confiscate hundreds of containers in the next two or three days to ensure complete blockade of all the Red Zone, sources said. The Red Zone will be completely cordoned off before November 30 public rally, the sources added. People are facing serious problems due to blockade of Nadra Chowk and Aga Khan Road for vehicular traffic. Long queues of vehicles were seen at blocked roads where traffic was diverted to other lanes.
A police official requesting anonymity said that the district administration has demanded reinforcement of 8,000 extra personnel from the police force of Punjab, Kashmir and FC. Extra police contingents would perform duties at entry and exit points of Islamabad and around the rally venue of the PTI, he said. The official said the city police also demanded extra armed personnel carriers (APCs), prisoner vans and troops’ carriers for November 30.
He said that the city administration and police are expecting the participation of a large number of people in the November 30 public gathering. He said that negotiations between the PTI and the district administration are under way for deciding the venue of the public gathering. During negotiations, the PTI leadership insisted that they would stage the rally at D-Chowk, where Imran Khan’s container is already placed, while the administration is offering them an alternative venue. PTI has already turned down offers to hold its rally at places such as F-9 Park, Kashmir Highway and Aabpara.
SOURCE: RECORDER REPORT