Population of Five Million People under Siege

Islamabad Highway Blocked | Faizabad Interchange | Islamabad Expressway Situation | Dharna at Faizabad
Barrier Installed by Tehreek e Labaik at Islamabad Expressway. Photo: Overseas Tribune

Overseas Tribune Exclusive,

Protesters from a religious group blocked the Islamabad Expressway since last five days, the people of twin cities are under siege. People are facing severe issues of transport. Public transport is available till Faizabad Interchange, after that people use to walk till I-8 check post of Islamabad Police and then have to wait for other vans.

The Islamabad Expressway have become a bus stand, there are several cars parked on both sides of Islamabad Expressway.

The protesters have installed barriers on roads for passerby and have also setup a force armed with clubs for searching anyone to approach the protest site and not letting vehicles to pass.

Protest against Islamabad Expressway Blockage

“I went to Faizabad today to convey the message of peace and condemnation on behalf of people of Islamabad. I stood up to their entrance with placards for some time after that I reached the spot few meters away from stage and stoop up with the placards. Suddenly out of no way a mob rushed towards me and started confrontation. One of them said “Kia likha hai is p. kia hai yeh”. I translated for them in Urdu. Then he said “tm humain galat bol rhy ho”. They started raising slogans and tried to assault me.
They threatened and abused me meanwhile some of the media guys came in. They pushed me inside the DSNG Van and one of them said “You have no idea how brutal and filthy these people are from inside and outside. I have been reporting here from 5 days and what I have seen is extremely wicked,” said Mehran Saeed, a commuter.

However Mehran has planned to go again for the protest with large number of people. According to some Facebook groups, there would be a peaceful protest tomorrow at 11 am near Faizabad Interchange against the blockage of Islamabad Expressway.

“Either the minister resigns or we are killed or arrested: we will not leave this place,” Pir Muhammad Afzal Qadri, one of the group’s leaders, told AFP at the protest site.

Where is Islamabad Police?

In normal routine, there around 10-20 policemen on Islamabad Police check post at I-8, but at this moment there is not even a single police officer on that check post. Who will assure safety of people? Authorities are shying away from use of force against these protesters.

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