Pakistan Today (Lahore)

Rasheed asks PDM to review long march date

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Minister for Interior Sheikh Rasheed Ahmed on Tuesday asked the Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM) to review its decision of holding an anti-inflation march in Islamabad on Pakistan Day. His remarks came in the backdrop of the PDM’S decision of holding a march in Islamabad on March 23. “Everyone has a right to hold peaceful protest. However, the opposition needs to review its decision about the date of the protest,” the minister said while addressing a news conference. He asked the National Assembly Opposition Leader Shehbaz Sharif and JUI-F chief Maulana Fazlur-rehman to change the date for the march. Announcing a march on such a date is not in interest of the country as the entire nation along with foreign delegates and overseas Pakistanis come to Islamabad for witnessing the national parade arranged by Pakistan’s armed forces on every March 23. The minister said if the opposition does not change the date then it should not blame the government for not allowing them to hold protest as Islamabad would be on high alert for the parade with closure of some roads for two to three days in advance for parade rehearsal. He said the prime minister has received recommenda­tions on 14 programmes under National Action Plan, upon which the government would ensure implementa­tion in true letter and spirit. He said Fazl should not drag seminary students in the politics and use them as a tool to achieve agenda of those who have already lost popularity among the masses. Commenting on the NA-133 by-election, Rasheed said the PML-N candidate secured only 10 percent votes as they cannot make the people fool any more. To a question, he said the prime minister has convened a detailed meeting on the Sialkot incident and directed to take stringent measures as per law.

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