Checkpoints: Security stepped up amidst increased threat in Lahore

Written by  Published by:Shiite News
Published in Pakistan
Tuesday, 05 November 2013

alamLahore Police conducted a general hold up operation in the city on Saturday amidst fears of increased militant activity in the wake of the US drone strike that killed Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan chief Hakimullah Mehsud and the upcoming Muharram.

Some 33 suspects were picked up from areas near the main Muharram procession routes in Islampura, Mochi Gate and Karbala Gamay Shah, while a total of 69 were detained from all around the city. The suspects were all believed to be Afghans or people from the Tribal Areas who failed to provide identification documents to the police.

Acting DIG (Operations) Rana Abdul Jabbar ordered police to set up more checkpoints in the city. He said that policemen in civilian clothes would be deployed at market places, processions and other areas to keep an eye on suspicious people.

Security has also been beefed up at the city’s jails. Inspector General for Prisons Farooq Nazeer said that he had sent a request to the Interior Ministry for Rangers personnel to be deployed at Central Camp Jail and Lot Lakhpat Jail during Muharram.

Mujahid Squad SP Rana Muhammad Masoom ordered all Mujahid Squad DSPs to remain on alert during all three shifts and cancelled all personnel leaves up to Muharram 10. He instructed them to upgrade all checkpoints in the city and to deploy more personnel at the city’s exit and entry points. He said all cars entering Lahore must be checked thoroughly. Traffic jams were reported at Thokar Niaz Beg, Saggian and Shahdara as the heavy checking resulted in long queues.

Section 144

Meanwhile, Lahore Commissioner Rashid Mahmood Langrial said that the city government would impose Section 144 of the Maintenance of Public Order Act to ban the public display of arms, publication of hate literature and hate speech during Muharram. Addressing a meeting on security arrangements for the holy month, Langrial said that all main Shia processions and gatherings would be monitored at the central control room.

Finance Minister Mian Mujtaba Shujaur Rehman, who is also chairman of the Divisional Muharram Cabinet Committee, called for sweep operations. He added that cabinet members would also attend meetings at the district level to receive briefings from DCOs and DPOs regarding security arrangements.

Food Minister Bilal Yasin, MPA Khawaja Imran Nazir, MPA Majid Zahoor, MNA Mehr Ishtiaq, MPA Mian Marghoob, MPA Yaqoob Nadeem Sethi, MPA Rana Arshad, DIG Abdul Jabbar and Sheikhupura Regional Police Officer Abu Bakar Khuda Bakhsh also attended the meeting.

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