Long march: In the name of security, mobile services suspended

Published: January 13, 2013

Supporters of Tahirul Qadri take part in a protest march in Lahore. PHOTO: AFP

LAHORE / ISLAMABAD / KARACHI: Cellular services have been suspended in parts of Pakistan on Sunday owing to reports of attacks on Tahirul Qadri and the long march participants.

Services were suspended at 5pm and will remain off until further notice by the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA).

Lahore

Areas where services are made unavailable include Gulberg, Link Road, Model Town, Faisal Town, New Campus, Dharampura, Gari Shahu, Imamia Colony, Minar-e-Pakistan, Railway Road, Badami Bagh, Ravi Road, Shadra, Nau Lakha Chowk and Do Moria Pul as well as some areas of the district Sheikhupura. However, services were restored in some of the mentioned areas.

Twin cities

Apart from Lahore, mobile phone services will be suspended in Rawalpindi, Islamabad and its adjacent areas on Monday.

Officials associated with the Crisis Management Cell (CMC) told The Express Tribune that the services will remain suspended in twin cities from Monday afternoon onwards.

Karachi

Cellphone services were suspended in Karachi’s Clifton and Defence area today reportedly because of a protest held outside Bilawal House against Shia killing.

Long march security threats

Intelligence reports have confirmed that several terrorist outfits have planned attacks on the January 14 long march of Minhajul Quran International (MQI).

According to a Special Branch (SB) report – a copy of which is available with The Express Tribune – confirmed that the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) is planning an attack on the rally.

The group is also planning the assassination of influential scholar Mufti Muneebur Rehman and Dawat-e-Islami chief Maulana Ilyas Qadri.

A report by the interior ministry’s National Crisis Management Cell supported the Special Branch report regarding possible TTP attacks on Qadri’s rally.

Another SB report suggested that the Saifullah Baqi-led Ghazi Fidai Force is planning suicide attacks on the march.

The National Crisis Management Cell of Interior Ministry and Special Branch recommended foolproof security and vigilance for Qadri’s caravan.

Preventive measures

In the light of these intelligence reports, a circular was issued to the administration, police department, other Law Enforcement Agencies (LEAs), Corps Commander, Corps 4, Home Department, Joint Director Intelligence Bureau(IB), Sector Commander Military Intelligence (MI), Sector Commander Inter Services Intelligence (ISI), Additional Inspector General of police Counter Terrorism Department (CTD).

The circular called for increased coordination between all the departments.

Ban on pillion riding

A ban on pillion riding has been imposed in Karachi effective immediately, Express News reported.

The interior ministry issued the ban, which will remain in effect until further notice.

Reader Comments (25)

  • Ch. Allah Daad
    Jan 13, 2013 - 9:00PM

    He is riding in a bomb proof truck, therefore he does not care about poor people and thousands of security personnel. Its a shame that our brave soldiers who are fighting against dealiest criminals are not provided bomb proof trucks but this anarchist is given so much security. Who would pay taxes, if government resources are spent on such useless expeditions.

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  • Mohammad Ali Siddiqui
    Jan 13, 2013 - 9:01PM

    The sit-in protest by Hazara Community has not ended as yet despite a lapse of three long days and Pakistan is facing another threat from TTP to attack the participants of Dr. Tahir-ul-Qadri’s long march procession.

    May I ask the people sitting at the helm of affairs as where they are taking Pakistan to?

    For God’s sake curb and eradicate the menace of terrorism, otherwise Pakistanis have no future.

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  • naeem khan Manhattan,Ks
    Jan 13, 2013 - 9:02PM

    Who is paying for this extravaganza, Qadri must be multi-millionaire to afford it or some one else with deep pockets are financing him and his cohorts. Some how this guy is imported from Canada like that prime minister,imported from USA, who has flown the coop long time ago. Qadri is being portrayed to be the most patriotic Pakistani around and just look at the hired unemployed masses, they are following him like cattle.Elections are around the corner and who will benefit the most from derailing it, why does he not show his solidarity with the minorities in Pakistan who are being slaughtered by some religious freaks and zealots day in and day out.What ever is going on in Pakistan currently reinforces the popular perception that Pakistan is a lawless country. It seems like to me.

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  • Sajid
    Jan 13, 2013 - 9:36PM

    Thanks GOD they mentioned the department where they sent circular, otherwise it was our duty to control the terrorists.

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  • Jan 13, 2013 - 9:40PM

    ALLAH khair kare…

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  • Amber
    Jan 13, 2013 - 9:55PM

    He should have postponed his long march for quetta!! Alas he tooo just needs attention on himself…..why does he not run for elections in Canada?

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  • J.Sandhu
    Jan 13, 2013 - 10:00PM

    you forgot to inform the Parent Teacher Association (PTA).

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  • Umer
    Jan 13, 2013 - 10:30PM

    @Amber: “He should have postponed his long march for quetta!! Alas he tooo just needs attention on himself…..why does he not run for elections in Canada?”

    If he had postponed it, everyone would have said that he is scared to doing the long march… Please use your little brain before offending anyone…

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  • Sudhir
    Jan 13, 2013 - 10:54PM

    Long live Dr. Qadri and all those who sincerely want a change of corrupt system and end to the dynastic politics of corruption and nepotism.

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  • Habib ullah
    Jan 13, 2013 - 11:08PM

    Such march should have been done much earlier by Nawaz sharif ,and Imran khan if they they would have realized the sufferings of people of Pakistan.
    Also this is too late by Qadri and not at the suitable time ,thus evolving different doubts in the minds.

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  • observer
    Jan 13, 2013 - 11:15PM

    The government is delaying to resolve Quetta matter in order to confuse people between long-march and killing protests. PML-N, PPP, MQM ANP and all other corrupts should be punished for their sins.

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  • Mohammed Malik
    Jan 13, 2013 - 11:19PM

    May Allah protect the good Qadri. He needs to do Tahrir in all of pakistan’s provinces against all politicians.

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  • sabi
    Jan 13, 2013 - 11:45PM

    Millions being spent on security for this long march for power hungry bigots should go for widows,orphans.handicaped the first priority of state.Fill the stomach first and fill the jails with those who snatch piece of bread from poor to make their kingdoms.

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  • Waseem
    Jan 13, 2013 - 11:52PM

    I hope common man will have relief. Lets get rid of this corrupt political system, impliment reforms proposed by Qadri and move our country fawrward. Lets make our country safe for all and give right to prosper to all. God bless Pakistan.

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  • Mohammed Malik
    Jan 13, 2013 - 11:53PM

    At least someone is doing something concrete unlike fans of imran khan’s PTI who love to jump like every time he just gives a statement. I respect Imran for being honest but he’s too naive to say he can wipe out terrorism and corruption in 90 days.Recommend

  • Mirza
    Jan 14, 2013 - 12:28AM

    Pakistan is in such a peaceful and prosperous state that they can afford long marches in every city of the country. What a sad situation that our 90 brothers and sisters are lying down in their own blood and there is no agitation, march or dharna to help bury them and protect their families. It is all about politics, and power grab without contesting elections.

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  • Mirza
    Jan 14, 2013 - 12:45AM

    Pakistan is in such a peaceful and prosperous state that they can afford long marches in every city of the country. What a sad situation that our 90 brothers and sisters are lying down in their own blood and there is no agitation, march or dharna to help bury them and protect their families. It is all about politics and power grab without contesting elections.

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  • Raj Kafir
    Jan 14, 2013 - 12:59AM

    Are there any women in the march?

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  • Iftikhar Ud Din Khattak
    Jan 14, 2013 - 1:18AM

    I am seriously depressed and tense because of this mobile service suspension which is now becoming daily practice, I am not TUQ’s supporter but this protest is his democratic right. Despite the fact Govt shall give them full protection, they are busy in making problems for them. Very very unfair call from Govt, this rehman malik is destroying pakistan at steam, what will be the impact of these suspension on our foreign direct investment (FDI) while many companies like Vodafone etc are interested to invest in pakistan’s most fast growing industry of cellular telecommunication. Mobile phone service suspension is never the solution of anything, but the end result is completely unacceptable. We are almost near to our final exam in university with still pending final projects, how will we communicate with our group members and with our supervisors? How will we contact our families back home which are worried for us just because of the long march ? How will we be informed if GOD FORBID there is an emergency happened in back home ? Wonderful interior ministry, I will rank it as wonder of the world ! Strange Pakistan

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  • dr j tipu
    Jan 14, 2013 - 2:39AM

    go on Dr Saheb, ur going for a good and rightful cause anyway, i see no current “SYSTEM” in Pakistan anyway, so why not flatten it up all and restart

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  • Ch. Allah Daad
    Jan 14, 2013 - 3:14AM

    @ Sudhir, Even before anything is done about corrupton, we have already spent billions and could lose many lives. Is this the way things work out in Canada?

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  • Jan 14, 2013 - 4:10AM

    Mr Qadri must be sent bill forbhis security.He has not paid is single pennythru his tax return to Pakistan .If he does not pay the bill confiscate his assets.

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  • Ali
    Jan 14, 2013 - 7:33AM

    @Ch. Allah Daad:
    Benazir Bhutto also travelled in a bombproof truck, no one questioned that..

    Blockquote

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  • OK
    Jan 15, 2013 - 1:12AM

    why dont you tell us about the number of police and security personnel used to protect pml ministers and their family /friends…@Ch. Allah Daad:

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  • ahsan
    Jan 25, 2013 - 3:46PM

    The suspension of cell phone services in the country made its users uneasy as people cannot make calls. In these circumstances, I recommend all my friends to have atleast one landline connection at their homes to avoid any trouble or difficulty.

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