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Interior Minister returns from UAE due to prevailing situation

Sheikh Rashid left to watch a cricket match in Dubai. Source: APP.

ISLAMABAD: Interior Minister Sheikh Rashid Ahmed has returned to Islamabad from the United Arab Emirates (UAE) due to the worsening law and order situation in the federal capital.

Rashid had left the country to attend the Pakistan-India cricket match being held at the Dubai International Stadium on Sunday. However, the minister had returned on private airline PK-213 flight from Sharjah to Islamabad on Saturday morning due to the prevailing situation.

It may be mentioned that the outlawed Tehreek-e-Labbaik (TLP) has announced a long march to Islamabad, forcing law enforcement authorities to seal various parts of Islamabad and Rawalpindi.

In Lahore, TLP activists clashed with police leading to violent protests. Two policemen were martyred after cars collided during the protest in the Punjab capital, a police spokesperson said.

According to the spokesperson, the policemen were injured after the cars collided near District Court in Lahore. Following the accident, they were rushed to a hospital but succumbed to their wounds. The martyred policemen were identified as Ayub and Khalid, stationed at Gawalmandi and Mayo Garden police stations respectively.

READ MORE: Three policemen martyred in clash with TLP activists in Lahore

Moreover, a clash took place between police and workers of the banned outfit near MAO College, where 10 personnel, including the station house officer (SHO), were injured. They were later shifted to a nearby hospital, the spokesperson said.

Chief Minister Sardar Usman Buzdar on Friday announced that the provincial government has decided to form a committee to negotiate with the proscribed TLP as the outfit staged protests to demand the release of their leader Saad Rizvi.

Buzdar made the announcement regarding the government’s decision to hold talks with the banned outfit on Twitter. “We have formed a committee, consisting of senior members of the Punjab Cabinet Raja Basharat and Chaudhry Zaheeruddin to negotiate with the Tehreek-e-Labbaik,” Buzdar wrote.

It is pertinent to mention that members of the banned outfit announced a protest after Friday prayers to demand the release of Rizvi who has been under custody since April after the party was declared a proscribed organisation under anti-terrorism laws and launched a broad crackdown against the party.