Major roads in the Rawalpindi and Islamabad have been blocked, including Marir Chowk, Faizabad Interchange, and Murree Road by security in response to the planned Tehreek-e-Labbaik Pakistan (TLP) long march from Lahore to Islamabad as well as avoid any TLP Dharna in the twin cities. Furthermore, the metro bus service between Rawalpindi and Islamabad has also been suspended by authorities to prepare for the TLP long march.
The party continues to demand the release of their its Chief Saad Hussain Rizvi, the son of late founder Khadim Hussain Rizvi along with the expulsion of the French ambassador from the country. It bears mentioning that Saad Rizvi has been in custody fo the Punjab Government since 12 April 2021 for charges of inciting violence.
The banned religious party had called for a long march from Lahore towards the capital after Friday prayers accusing the government for turning back on their promise and the agreement signed between both sides on 20 April 2021. TLP’s media cell has stated that the group had a “Plan B” in case members were restricted or stopped from marching towards the capital. “If any hurdles are created, the party also has a Plan B to thwart any official attempts,” said TLP leader Pir Ajmal Qadri.
The security teams have blocked several roads in Rawalpindi and Islamabad, including link roads from Marir Chowk to Faizabad Interchange and Murree Road to the inner city have been closed for traffic, while Shamsabad and Faizabad to Islamabad have also been sealed with containers to keep TLP from entering the capital or staging a sit-in (dharna) at Faizabad Interchange or any other important main roads.
Heavy contingents of law enforcement personnel have been deployed at major intersections, including Tarnol, Rawat, and Bhara Kahu while containers have also been placed at these points. The blockades have caused difficulties to the citizens while commuting to schools, colleges and work.
However, the Islamabad Traffic Police (CTP) spokesperson has stated that Park Road, Tramri Chowk, and Lehtar Road could be used as an alternate route to reach Islamabad Highway while Srinagar Highway, Ninth Avenue, and IJP Road can be used to reach Rawalpindi.
Rawalpindi Traffic Police has issued a statement in regards to the arrangements to deal with TLP long march to Islamabad or any possible TLP Dharna. In the statement, it said that Murree Road and Rawal Road have been closed for commuters while Old Airport Road and Mall Road are open. The district administration have sealed Gawalmandi, Saddar Road, and Kamran Market.
Tehreek-e-Labbaik Pakistan (TLP) is demanding the government to fulfil its promise made a few months ago. The main demand includes expulsion of the French ambassador to Pakistan as well as release of their chief Saad Hussain Rizvi, who has been detained by Punjab Government since 12 April 2021.