Law and order: Protesting lawyers halt laptop distribution

End picketing after chief minister assures them of starting work on High Court bench in a week.


Our Correspondent March 07, 2012

SARGODHA: Dozens of lawyers on Wednesday broke on to University of Sargodha premises and took over a stage set up for a laptop distribution ceremony which was to be attended by Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif.

They occupied the stage for over an hour and refused to leave until they were assured a meeting with the chief minister to discuss the establishment of a High Court bench in Sargodha would be arranged.

The ceremony began with a delay of over an hour after the chief minister had met and addressed the protesting lawyers and assured them that a summary for setting up a High Court bench in Sargodha would be approved by the cabinet in a week.

Earlier, Sharif had remained stranded at a Pakistan Air Force Base (PAF) after arriving in the city to attend the ceremony. Laptops were later distributed by the chief minister among 3,486 students of the university.

Some of the lawyers had entered the university campus by scaling the boundary walls. Others smashed the walk-through gates, compromising security arrangements in place for the ceremony. Witnesses said a security guard was beaten up for putting up resistance to the protesters. The lawyers also chanted slogans against the provincial government for failing to honour its promise about the establishment of the High Court bench.

Talking to The Express Tribune, District Bar Association president Shams Naveed Cheema said lawyers of Sargodha had been campaigning for the establishment of a High Court bench for over two years. He said the chief minister had yet to honour the commitment made to the lawyers in this matter during a visit ahead of by-elections in NA-68 two years ago. He justified the picketing by saying that the administration had been warned about it in advance. “We had told them that we will not let the chief minister leave Sargodha without meeting us,” he said.

Heated arguments and competitive chanting of slogans were also reported during the picketing between some lawyers and students who had gathered to attend the ceremony.

The lawyers refused to listen to requests by UoS Vice Chancellor Dr Akram Chaudhry who repeatedly requested them to end their demonstration at the campus and leave the university. Commissioner Shaukat Ali and Acting RPO Dr Rizwan also arrived at the scene and negotiated with the protesting lawyers.

A university spokesman told The Tribune that there was no plan to initiate any action in the matter. He said security arrangements would be stepped up for similar events in future to avoid untoward situations.

 

Published in The Express Tribune, March 8th, 2012.

COMMENTS (16)

Reality2020 | 9 years ago | Reply Tell the Nation: Where werethes Lap Tops before processions of Imran Khan? Where was Govt. Punjab from 2008 to 2011? From where suddenly it came to their mind that there are students studying in Punjab? If youth still decides to vote for Tehreek-e-Insaf, then what will be the reaction of PML(N)?
MianSharif2013 | 9 years ago | Reply

@Baleegh: But what will be reaction of Government of Punjab, still if the youth likes Imran Khan? Tell the nation one thing that where were these laptops beofre processions of Imran Khan???

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