Maryam Nawaz, Fazlur Rehman reach sit-in venue

1684149045 Maryam Nawaz Fazlur Rehman reach sit in venue

The Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM), the ruling party in the country, has announced a sit-in protest in Islamabad to demonstrate against the superior judiciary for “facilitating” Imran Khan, the Chairman of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI), who was recently arrested in the Al-Qadir Trust case. The protesters are a mix of workers and supporters of the Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam-Fazl (JUI-F), who have camped outside the Supreme Court, with many climbing the judges’ gate after making their way into the Red Zone.

The PDM leadership, with Chief Maulana Fazlur Rehman and PML-N Senior Vice-President Maryam Nawaz, has arrived at the sit-in venue and stepped onto the stage. Meanwhile, the Special Assistant to Prime Minister on Interior and Legal Affairs, Attaullah Tarar, also reached Shahrah-e-Dastoor earlier.

PTI Chief, Imran Khan, called the protesters “goons” who are “being facilitated by our security agencies to take over the Supreme Court and subvert the constitution”. He has asked all citizens to be ready for “peaceful protests,” sharing fears regarding the “end of the Pakistani dream” once the Constitution and Supreme Court are destroyed.

PDM protest in Islamabad: Maryam Nawaz, Fazlur Rehman reach sit-in venue

In the meantime, Section 144 has been imposed in the federal capital, with the Islamabad police warning protestors to remain peaceful and cautioning them about threats of terrorism. The convoys of PDM coalition parties, including the JUI-F and the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N), have set out to join the protest in Islamabad.

Meanwhile, protests broke out in Gilgit Baltistan, where demonstrators blocked the main intersection inside the district headquarters in Astor while protesting at the Eidgah Ali Murtaza on JUI-F chief’s call. Convoys of protestors from Rawalpindi, Kohat, Peshawar, Dera Ismail Khan, and Malakand are on their way to join the protest in the federal capital.

From Rawalpindi, PML-N’s convoy is being led by Haneef Abbasi and Sardar Naseem and will enter Islamabad’s Faizabad via Rawalpindi’s Murree Road. The Pakistan Muslim League-Quaid (PML-Q) has also announced its plan to join the sit-in.

Threats of terrorism

The Islamabad Police warned protesters about threats of terrorism after their entry into the Red Zone and had earlier asked citizens to cooperate and remain calm. However, the situation, police said, was peaceful. According to police sources, the stage for the sit-in will be set up at a distance from the Supreme Court. The police sources added that there is no objection if the stage is set up in front of the Election Commission of Pakistan and Prime Minister House, but their strategy is against placing the stage right in front of the SC.

Sit-in subject to interior ministry approval

Protesters entered the Red Zone via the Serena intersection and pushed away the police and administration, according to the district administration. “Protesters were informed about the government’s orders on behalf of the administration,” the administration said.

The local administration and police have informed the interior ministry regarding the situation of the protest. “The district administration had decided to allow the PDM to protest, but subject to the approval of the interior ministry,” they added.

This is a developing story and will be updated with details