Protests erupt in other cities of Punjab and Sindh
ISLAMABAD ( MEDIA REPORT )
Besides Capital City, protesters and law enforcement officials are facing off in Karachi, Lahore, Faisalabad, Gujranwala and Sambrial in Sialkot district.
In Karachi, the protesters have blocked the roads leading to the Numaish Chowrangi, where they are staging their sit-in.
In Lahore, protesters blocked the railway track in Shahdara and roads in the areas of Datta Darbar and Mall road. No injuries were reported and several people were arrested. The arrested individuals were later released.
In Sambrial, protesters set tires alight on the Sialkot-Wazirabad road
As the midnight deadline given by the district administration expired, the protesters belonging to a religious party remained camped at the Faizabad Interchange overnight, continuing their stranglehold over the vital transport junction.
According to sources, Pir Nizamuddin Jami had contacted a government official and requested an extension of the deadline and expressed hope that the issue could be resolved through mutual understanding.
Late Friday night, the district administration of the federal capital had issued a final warning to protesters of a religious party, camped at Faizabad Interchange, and had told them to disperse by midnight, threatening to take action of the order was not followed.
The warning was issued in a notification issued by the district magistrate.
The order by the district administration came after the Islamabad High Court (IHC) on Friday ordered to shift the protesters to the Parade Ground within a span of three days.
The district administration had stated that the protesters have been camping at the critical junction illegally and the protesters have been issued a three-day warning previously too, hence, the protesters should vacate Faizabad Interchange by midnight Friday.
If an operation is conducted to clear the interchange, then the responsibility will fall on the leadership and the participants of the protest, the administration added.
The Supreme Court on Thursday said that when the writ of the state ends, decisions are made on the streets.
The protest has resulted in severe issues for residents of the capital and Rawalpindi, who face traffic jams and mobility issues on a daily basis. At least two casualties due to ambulances being unable to cross the protesters have also been reported.
Talks between the government and protesters last Saturday and then on Monday had failed with no breakthrough in sight, as protest leaders continued to demand the resignation of Federal Minister for Law and Justice Zahid Hamid.
The protests were being held against the change in the finality of Prophethood oath in the law when the government passed the Elections Act 2017 last month. The change, dubbed a clerical error by the government, was immediately fixed as an amendment was passed later.