Violent protesters take charge of traffic in Lahore
LAHORE: The worst traffic jams have been witnessed in the city due to violent protest by religious outfits in various parts of the city on Saturday after the operation against Tehreek-e-Labaik Ya Rasool Allah in Islamabad.
Members of Tehreek-e-Labaik Ya Rasool Allah led by Asif Ashraf Jalali started assembling at Data Darbar early Saturday morning following reports of Faizabad operation, throwing traffic out of gear.
They later came to the Charing Cross where they clashed with police. The protest rally caused a massive gridlock after police tried to stop the protesters by barricading roads. Police arrested about 50 workers of Tehreek-e-Labaik Ya Rasool Allah.
Traffic at Mall Road came to a standstill as stick-wielding protestor did not let any citizen move. The workers placed barricades on their own and police acted as a silent spectator. Traffic police officials and personnel of Anti-Riot Force were seen standing at a distance from the protesters.
According to city traffic police spokesperson Muhammad Arif, the angry protestors held protest rallies at 16 points in the city and blocked Mall Road, Shahdara Moor, Thokar Niaz Baig, Bhatta Chowk, Imamia Colony, Allah Ho Chowk, Chungi Ammar Siddhu, Ferozpur Road, Lahore Press Club, Data Darbar, Daroghawala, Shah Alam Chowk, Kahna, Faisal Chowk, Mughal Pura, Garhi Shahu and other areas.
He stated that the traffic police were trying to ease the traffic and were diverting it to alternate routes.
Police deployed a large contingent in various areas but traffic in different parts of the city was also disrupted badly. Long queues of vehicles were witnessed on Mall Road, Canal Road, Jail Road, Ferozepur Road, linking arteries and even thoroughfares. Thousands of commuters were left stranded due to blockage of roads.
Addressing the workers at Mall road, Asif Ashraf Jalali stated that every participant of the protest was guided by their love and affection for the Holy Prophet (PBUH) and that they will not spare the government which brought change in Khatam Nabuwat laws and started operation against innocent workers in Islamabad.
Jalali after motivating workers moved back to Data Darbar.
Meanwhile, two resolutions were submitted in the Punjab Assembly; one in favor of the Faizabad sit-in and other against the protest of religious parties.
The resolution submitted by Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI)’s Nabila Hakim condemned operation against the religious groups and urged the government to hold dialogue with the protestors.
Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N)’s Hina Pervez Butt condemned the current situation in her resolution and assured the law enforcement agencies of her full cooperation.