LAHORE: The Lahore High Court (LHC) has barred the Pakistan Awami Tehreek (PAT) from making arrangements for a sit-in by its women wing on Lahore’s Mall Road on Wednesday (today), seeking a reply from the party over a petition filed by local traders.
The Mall Road Traders Association (MRTA) had challenged the sit-in, announced by PAT chief Dr Tahirul Qadri, calling it a violation of the court’s order.
Appearing in the court on Tuesday on behalf of the traders, advocate Asad Manzoor Butt said that the high court had already banned protests and processions on Mall Road and the government had also imposed section 144 in compliance with the order.
He said Nasar Bagh and Attique Stadium had been specified by the government for the purpose of processions and protest activities. He called Mall Road a vulnerable place for public gathering as a suicide attack also had occurred on the same venue during a sit-in of pharmacists.
The petitioner also said that a protest on Mall Road would badly affect business activities. He asked the court to stop the PAT from holding their sit-in.
Advocate General Punjab Shakilur Rehman told the court that the PAT announced its protest despite imposition of section 144 of Criminal Procedure Code (CrPC). He said the government would ensure the enforcement of the ban on protests.
Advocate Ishtiaq Chaudhry sought time to file a detailed reply on behalf of the PAT.
LHC’s Justice Mamoon Rashid Sheikh adjourned the hearing for Wednesday (today), restraining the PAT from making arrangements for its sit-in till the petition is decided.