TLP Protestors arrived in Faizabad

TLP Protestors arrived in Faizabad:

Anti-France protesters in Pakistan march from Rawalpindi to Faizabad in Islamabad

A large number of supporters of Tehreek-i-Labbaik Pakistan(TLP) on Sunday marched from Liaquat Bagh Rawalpindi to Faizabad in Islamabad to protest against the publication of “blasphemous” sketches in France.

Taking to Twitter, Roohan Ahmed, a reporter with Samaa TV, said, “Thousands of supporters of Tehreek-Labbaik Pakistan are marching towards Islamabad.

A heavy contingent of police is deployed in areas around Faizabad to stop the anti-France march.”

Another Pakistan reporter IA Rajpoot tweeted, “More than 3k protesters of TLP are staging sit in at Faizabad Bridge even during heavy rain.

Rally is led by Saad Rizvi, son of Allama Khadim Hussain Rizvi.

Other prominents are Allama Shafique Amini, Allama Abdul Ghafoor, Qari Shafique.”

He had also reported that the situation in Faizabad has become tense. “TLP mob is staging a sit-in at Faizabad Bridge and there are unconfirmed reports that MOI will extend MS suspension or had extended.”

Harald Doornbos, a journalist based in the Middle East, said, “There is an anti-France protest now in Rawalpindi, Pakistan. Demonstrators want to move towards Faizabad interchange, close to Islamabad.”

It may be mentioned that the French Embassy is located in Islamabad.
Meanwhile, another Twitter user has slammed the Pakistan media for not reporting the demonstrations.

“15,000 ‘anti-France protesters’ have sieged all entrances to RawalPindi / Islamabad.

The government has failed to contain their advances. Cell phone services have been suspended. Not a single newsroom is reporting.

Earlier, Dawn had reported that blockades have been installed at different entry points of the capital, including Faizabad, with the deployment of police and the paramilitary force to stop the protest rally of TLP from entering the city.

The TLP had given a call for the ‘Tahafuz Namoos-i-Risalat’ march from Liaquat Bagh Rawalpindi to Faizabad in Islamabad on Sunday to protest against the publication of “blasphemous” sketches in France.

Sit-in held at Faizabad Interchange over blasphemous caricatures

Liaquat Bagh presented a scene of a battleground as police and stick-wielding activists of Tehreek-i-Labbaik Pakistan (TLP) clashed throughout the day on Sunday.

Riot police had to resort to teargas shelling against the stone-pelting protesters who had gathered on the call of TLP chief Allama Khadim Hussain Rizvi to denounce the publication of blasphemous caricatures in Charlie Hebdo magazine and remarks about Islam and terrorism by French President Emmanuel Macron.

During the clashes, dozens of police personnel, including Waris Khan police station SHO Abdul Aziz, and several TLP activists were injured and shifted to hospitals.


“Heavy teargas shelling also affected residents of the adjoining areas with many complaining of difficulty in breathing,” a resident of a locality near Liaquat Bagh said.

Earlier on Saturday, police were seen making announcements, asking traders on Murree Road and the adjoining markets to keep their businesses closed on Sunday, warning them of legal action if they did not comply with the directives.

The city’s 24 entry points were sealed with shipping containers, including Soan Bridge, Kutchery Chowk, Mareer Chowk, Liaquat Bagh, Shamasabad, Rehmanabad, Double Road, Adiala Road, Chur Chowk and I.J. Principal Road.

As many as 16 entry points to Islamabad were also blocked. There was also no mobile phone service in the entire Rawalpindi division since late Saturday night.

At Faizabad, police officials checked every vehicle, especially public transport, entering Islamabad and questioned the passengers.

City Police Officer Mohammad Ahsan Younas himself supervised action against the TLP protesters.

More than 170 activists were rounded up on Friday and Saturday and over 130 on Sunday.

Dozens of policemen injured

The protesters whose number was officially given at about 3,000 managed to reach Faizabad Interchange where they staged a sit-in.

Streetlights on Murree Road and Faizabad remained switched off as the protesters marched on Murree Road.

Islamabad Capital Territory police had also adopted unprecedented security measures to prevent the protesters from entering their area.

Over 3,100 law enforcement personnel, including 575 Rangers and 250 Frontier Constabulary personnel, were deployed.

Police had brought 14 prison vans, five water cannons, and six armored personnel carriers for the security of key government installations and maintaining law and order.

TLP Protestors arrived in Faizabad:

Addressing the protesters, Saad Rizvi, son of the TLP chief who had reached Liaquat Bagh on Sunday with other clerics, said they would not be deterred by the arrests and shelling and the rally would continue as planned.

He demanded the French ambassador be immediately expelled and all diplomatic, trade and economic ties with the country severed.

Many protesters managed to climb on to the metro bus track and started marching towards Islamabad. On the way, they clashed with police and damaged the metro bus stations.

According to a report submitted to Commissioner retired Capt Mohammad Mehmood, CCTV cameras were broken at Committee Chowk and Waris Khan metro bus stations while glass panes of the Sixth Road station and the elevator at Faizabad were damaged.

Meanwhile, journalists covering the protest claimed that the Police harassed them and snatched their mobile phones.

Ajab Gul Soorani & Rao Sajid Ali Member Chamber of Commerce Islamabad (ICCI) also reported that Police harassed Business community and arresting them without any reason.

People could also be seen walking to their destinations due to the closure of roads and the absence of public transport.

All major commercial and business areas of Rawalpindi city and cantonment remained closed except those in residential areas. However, the most affected were the people living in areas close to where the clashes took place.

Arif Tanoli, a resident of Committee Chowk, said people suffered a lot because of the blockades, closure of shops and suspension of mobile phone service.

He said he could not purchase medicine for his father who was a diabetic because they were not allowed to leave their home.

TLP Protestors arrived in Faizabad:

Sajid Mansoor, another resident of Committee Chowk, said his family and children remained confined to the house while his mother found it hard to breathe due to the heavy shelling in the area.

Mohammad Anwar from Arya Mohallah said he too could not purchase his weekly essentials because of the situation.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *