Policeman martyred, dozens injured in Faizabad operation
Several days and 20 days later, Pakistan government fianlly launched an operation against Faizabad sit-in protesters to clear the roads and disperse protesters.
Hundreds of police moved against the supporters of the Tehreek-i-Labaik Ya Rasool Allah party early Saturday after a deadline expired at midnight.
Police, Frontier Corps (FC) and Rangers personals accompanied Islamabad police after the protesters refused to clear Islamabad before the deadline given by the local administration to clear the main road.
Around 8,500 police and paramilitary troops in riot gear are taking part in the clearance operation, which was launched soon after the final deadline of 7am given to protesters expired.
Senior police officer Ismatullah Junejo said none of the police carried firearms to avoid loss of life, instead using only tear gas and water cannon to disperse the protesters.
The officers resorted to teargas and rubber bullets firing over which the workers of religious parties hurled stones at them.
Initial reports says, more than 100 people were injured, most of them from police.
Meanwhile, an emergency has also been declared in all the nearest hospitals whereas all shops and businesses have been shut in the area of the operation.
As per security agencies, almost 95 per cent of the sit-in area has been cleared by the police as the operation continues.
During operation clear-up, the protesters reportedly looted two police vehicles and two police vans have been set on fire in Rawalpindi, while the Metro bus station near Sixth Road has also been damaged.
Furthermore, the media sources told that the connected roads and streets have been closed by the administration in order to bar more people from joining the sit-in.
The protesters continuously demanded the resignation from Law Minister Zahid Hamid over the alleged exclusion of Khatm-e-Nabuwwat clause from the nomination papers to which he denies.
Both the parliament houses had restored the Khatm-e-Nabuwwat clause in the nomination papers in its original form through the Elections (Amendment) Bill 2017.
Around 3,000 protesters of ‘Tehreek-i-Labaik Ya Rasool Allah’ have been blocking the main Faizabad interchange since November 6 which is used by thousands of commuters, causing hours-long traffic jams in twin-cities.
The Capital administration and the interior ministry held several meeting to defuse the issue through soft processor but failed to fulfil the list of protesting group. Finally, the crackdown was launched after the last of a long series of deadlines lapsed on Saturday morning without the response from the agitating parties.