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Saturday April 20, 2024

Fear, panic grip residents of twin cities following violent protests

By Khalid Iqbal
May 11, 2023

Islamabad:Fear and panic have gripped the residents of the twin cities of Rawalpindi and Islamabad due to violent protest demonstrations of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) supporters. The protest demonstrations held by the supporters of PTI on major highways of the twin cities of Rawalpindi and Islamabad also paralysed the daily routine life of people even on the second day on Wednesday.

The Metro Bus Service (MBS) was suspended even on the second day while the majority of Private Transport Service (PSV) remained off the road due to fear and panic. The office goers particularly ladies faced the worst difficulties in reaching their offices due to shortage of transport.

A heavy contingent of police and Rangers was deployed all around the city to avoid a law and order situation. The local administration has blocked Murree Road from Mareer Chowk to Saddar with installation of big containers, trolleys, and tractors. The majority of business activities here in Rawalpindi remained suspended even on the second day.

Due to the closure of the GT Road, Murree Road at different points, and the roads leading to the new Islamabad Airport, the citizens faced serious problems. The Srinagar Highway remained packed with PTI supporters. The PTI supporters tried to reach Police Lines where Imran Khan was present but in vain because a heavy contingent of police and Rangers did not allow anyone even to come closer there.

During the protest on the main thoroughfares of the city, the traffic on GT Road, Taxila, Rawat, Airport Road, and Murree Road remained disrupted. On Murree Road, Shamsabad, the main highway of Rawalpindi city, the PTI activists blocked the passage by burning tyres and chanting anti-government slogans. But, police and Rangers were not providing them with time

to stay there.

Moreover, the ambulance services in the twin cities also remained disrupted due to the protests of PTI supporters. A day back, supporters of PTI were not only protesting but also robbing innocent people. The supporters of PTI entered shops and looted all valuables and cash money in the guise of protest demonstrations.

The supporters of PTI ransacked public and private properties. They had also damaged broken private vehicles during protest demonstrations. The shopkeepers and common citizens of the twin cities of Rawalpindi and Islamabad belonging to different walks of life alleged that the protesters seemed to be ‘trained workers’ of PTI. They were looting them with both hands in the guise of protest demonstrations. “We will never open our shops till peace,” the shopkeepers said. Well-placed sources told ‘The News’ that PTI protesters were not common but ‘trained’. The majority of protesters came from KP, the sources claimed.