LAHORE: The district administration has declared Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz’s (PML-N) public rally as illegal since the political party failed to obtain permission in a prescribed manner.
Deputy Commissioner Captain (Retd) Anwarul Haq issued a letter to PML-N President Shehbaz Sharif on Friday and strongly recommended to not hold the rally in view of the security situation.
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The Lahore DC has highlighted that as per Punjab Home Department’s June 5 order, “It is prohibited to hold gatherings, sit-ins, rallies, processions, and demonstrations, throughout the province in larger public interest, except those gatherings which are held in secured walled premises and duly allowed by the concerned deputy commissioner.”
He pointed out that the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) has also notified a code of conduct for political parties, contesting candidates, election agents and polling agents. As per various clauses of the ECP code of conduct, “Political parties and candidates shall convey their schedule of public rallies, processions, public gathering at least three days in advance. District, local administration shall be responsible for making appropriate security arrangements and regulating such public rallies, processions, public gatherings in such a manner that equal opportunities are provided to those interested in holding public rallies, processions and public gatherings.
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Consequent upon receipt of a request for holding of jalsa and rallies at a particular venue, the District Intelligence Committee considers the requests keeping in view all related aspects keeping in view intelligence-based information and consequently decision is taken by the competent authority for granting permission or otherwise.”
The letter stated: “It is evident that your political party has not applied for permission to hold jalsa or rallies at a particular venue within the prescribed time limit.”
The Lahore deputy commissioner has said that the PML-N leadership will be responsible if any untoward incident takes place.
Published in The Express Tribune, July 14th, 2018.
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