Workers of the right-wing religious parties have taken to streets across the country to protest against the Supreme Court’s verdict that acquitted Asia Bibi of blasphemy charges.
Ahead of the decision, the security had been put on high alert but nothing seems to bother protesters.
Tehreek-e-Labbaik Pakistan (TLP) had directed its workers to take the roads on Wednesday, ahead of the decision, and start the protest if SC releases Asia.
Following the verdict, Jamiat-Ulama-e-Islam (JUI-F) chief and the president of Muttahida Majlis Amal (MMA) Maulana Fazlur Rehman has also called his party workers to record a ‘peaceful’ protest.
Religious parties believe Asia Bibi’s acquittal has come under foreign pressure and is ‘not acceptable at any cost.’
However, the situation has not remained peaceful anymore in several parts of the country.
Islamabad & Rawalpindi
The country’s federal capital has been blocked for traffic after protesters started burning tires at several spots on major avenues.
The situation in the twin cities is worsening; The number of protesters is gradually rising and Army choppers can be seen in the air.
Faizabad Interchange has also been blocked from all four sides, and the roads surrounding Aabpara have also been closed for all traffic.
Due to protests- below mentioned routes are currently blocked:
- Liyari Express ay Karachi-Hyderabad roads are closed for traffic from both ends. Traffic is being diverted to Al Asif square towards Abu-Al-Hassan Asfahani road.
- Star Gate Road is closed for traffic.
- Tower road is also closed; take Jinnah Bridge towards MT khan road, MA Jinnah road towards Baba-e-Urdu cut while II Chandigar Road towards University centre as alternative route.
- Both roads for Numaish Chowk both roads are blocked, traffic is diverted towards 45 congress to P.P Chowrangi & Society towards corridor.
- Super highway Karachi to Hyderabad, both roads are closed for traffic. Traffic is diverted to Al Asif square towards Abu-Al-Hassan Asfahani road.
- 4K Chowrangi Road is closed for traffic.
Section 144 has been imposed in Punjab following the eruption of violent protests in several cities including Sialkot, Faisalabad, Narowal, Shaikhupura and Lala Musa, Kamonki and Kasur.
Punjab Traffic police have issued a circular detailing the blocked routes and their alternative.
Following roads across Punjab are blocked:
- Abdullah Chowk Shujabad
- GT chowk, GT road, Dina
- Bohr Chowk Sohawa, Jhelum
- Data Darbar Lahore
- Faisal Chowk Lahore
- Chungi Amar Sidhu Lahore
- Bhatti chowk Lahore
- Ghazi road Lahore.
- Texali chowk
- Shahdra chowk Lahore.
- Bypass Road Chichawatni
- Mallan Wala, G.T.Road Pattoki
- New Bypass, Kasur
- Malanwala, Kasur
- ChangManga Road, Kot Radha Kishan
Similar scenes can be observed in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Sindh and Balochistan as well.
In K-P, Babu Sabu Interchange has been closed, and a large number of protesters are chanting slogans and burning tires. Similarly, the Pak-Afghan border has also been shut down.
More to follow…