Security measures reviewed in twin cities

Pakistani Shiite Muslims pay respects to Zul jinnah, a horse symbolizing the horse Shiites' spiritual leader Imam Hussein used to fight against his enemy in Karbala, during a mourning procession, a day ahead of Ashoura holiday during the holy month of Muharram, in Islamabad, Pakistan, Monday, Nov. 3, 2014. Shiites will mark Ashoura, the tenth day of the month of Muharram, to commemorate the Battle of Karbala when Imam Hussein, a grandson of Prophet Muhammad, was killed. (AP Photo/B.K. Bangash)

ISLAMABAD: Minister of State for Interior Shehryar Khan Afridi on Thursday reviewed the security arrangements of the main procession in sector G-6 Islamabad and expressed his satisfaction over performance of police force and district adminsitation.

The state minister said that he is himself monitoring all arrangements and is satisfied over the performance of security personnel and officials of district administration. He said no compromise or sluggishness would be tolerated over such arrangements as it is their prime responsibility to ensure protection to the lives and property of the citizens.

He said that all stakeholders would be taken on board while making any decision about security-related issues or others.

The minister also met with the security personnel performing their duties and appreciated their devotion and commitment. He said that no stone would be left unturned to ensure protection to the citizens.


The Rawalpindi district police have finalised security arrangements for Ashura, while over 7,000 cops will provide security cover to the processions besides special traffic arrangements to regulate traffic flow.

City Traffic Police (CTP) have devised a traffic plan for the mourning processions and Majalis of the city to be organized on Friday.

According to City Police Officer (CPO) Rawalpindi Abbas Ahsan, all arrangements for the security of Ashura have been finalized.

Strict monitoring of the procession will be conducted as CCTV cameras have been installed at the route of the processions. The mourners will only be allowed to join the processions from different entry points. Quick Response Force would also be deployed for the protection of the mourners. Special contingents of commandos and police personnel will be deployed on sensitive points.

Walk-through gates will be installed for main mourning procession, he said adding, the policemen will use metal detectors along with the private guards of the Imambargahs and mourning procession managements. Every participant of the processions will be checked properly.

According to the security plan formulated in this regard, aerial surveillance of Ashura processions will be conducted. Special drone cameras will also be used to monitor the main procession. Special checking of the routes would be completed before start of the processions and bomb disposal squad will clear the routes.

The routes of the processions would be sealed completely. He said police checkpoints have been established at all entry and exit points of the district while Muhafiz Squad and Elite Force patrolling has also been enhanced in different areas to avert any untoward incident. Special contingents of Army and Rangers have also been deployed in sensitive areas.

The main processions will be taken out on Friday from Imambargah Colonel Maqbool and Imambargah Ashiq Hussain which after passing through their traditional routes including Fawara Chowk, Banni Chowk, Bagh Sardaran, Jamia Masjid Road, Purana Qila, Sarafa Bazaar, Raja Bazaar and China Market culminate at the Qadeemi Imambargah. ‘Tazia’, ‘Alam’ and ‘Zuljinah’ processions will be taken out from different parts of the city amid tight security arrangements. A total of 64 ‘Zuljinah’ processions will be taken out in the city.

Chief Traffic Officer (CTO) Muhammad Bin Ashraf said that a comprehensive traffic plan has been formulated to secure the routes of the processions of Ashura and facilitate the citizens. He said parking of vehicles and motorcycles would be banned along the route of the mourning procession, while all traffic proceeding towards the route of the procession would be diverted to other routes.

The CTO said an enhanced number of traffic wardens would be deployed in the city to keep the traffic flow smooth. A control room has also been set up at Traffic Headquarters to monitor the situation. He said Iqbal Road will remain closed from Committee Chowk and that DAV College Road will also be closed.

The main mourning procession will reach the Naya Mohallah Chowk and traffic will not be allowed to proceed to Fawara Chowk from DAV College Road. Traffic will be diverted towards Gowalmandi and Bhoosa Mandi. Traffic will be diverted on nearly 48 different routes of the city to ensure the security of the mourners and facilitate the citizens.

Traffic will not be allowed towards Imambargah Kadeemi and Imambargah Baltistani as it will be diverted from Pir Choha Chowk towards Pirwadhai and Asghar Mall Road.

The CTP will deploy 901 traffic wardens including 671 warden officers, 60 inspectors, seven DSPs and 163 traffic assistants. There will be complete ban on parking of any vehicle, motorcycle or handcarts on the route of the procession. The CTO said, emergency squads have also been appointed to maintain the traffic flow. He directed the officials to ensure parking at the distance of 200 meters from the route of the processions.

The citizens particularly those use social media advised to visit Facebook page ‘City Traffic Police Rawalpindi’ to get information about the traffic load and the plan.


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