Pakistan

Islamabad protest enters 19th day as deadlock persists

Islamabad

ISLAMABAD: The Tehreek Labaik Ya Rasool Allah continued the blockade of the Faizabad Interchange on the 19th day as the government is yet to find a peaceful end to the sit-in that has paralyzed life in the capital for over two weeks.

Hundreds of activists and supporters of the religious group have camped out at the Faizabad Interchange that connects Rawalpindi and Islamabad, adding to the suffering of the people of the twin cities of Islamabad and Rawalpindi.

On Thursday, the Supreme Court expressed extreme annoyance over the government for its failure to end the Faizabad sit-in.

A two-judge bench of the apex court, comprising Justice Mushir Alam and Justice Qazi Faiz Isa, rejected the reports submitted by the intelligence agencies and directed them to inform it as to who is funding the protesters.

It observed that the court was not asking to spray the protesters with bullets, but want to know whether any investigation was carried out to ascertain who was bankrolling them.

Interior Minister Ahsan Iqbal a day earlier said the Islamabad protesters have political ambitions as they wanted to garner support ahead of the next elections.

He said the protesters wanted to dent the ruling party’s vote bank, by pitting the PML-N against a particular sect.

Iqbal said the government is actively engaged in dialogue with the protesters to find a peaceful end to the protest.

He said he can clear the Faizabad Interchange of the protesters within three hours, but it could led to bloodshed or a repeat of the Lal Masjid operation.

The interior minister said there was no justification for seeking the resignation of Law Minister Zahid Hamid since he had no role in the now-withdrawn amendment in Khatm-e-Nabuwwat declaration for electoral candidates.

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Islamabad protest enters 19th day as deadlock persists

by Web Desk