Acting on the orders of Pakistan’s Supreme Court, police on Monday removed the barricades placed by the members of the banned Jamaat-ud Dawah outside the group’s headquarters at Lahore in the name of security after over a decade. Chief Justice Saqib Nisar had ordered the Punjab police to open all roads blocked in the name of security in Lahore.
“If you fail to submit a compliance report, the court will decide your fate. You are not going to stay as the IG even if the chief minister wants to retain you,” Justice Nisar has warned the Inspector General of Police on Sunday. Deputy Inspector General (Lahore) Dr Haider Ashraf on Monday told PTI that police had removed blockades from some 16 places including the JuD headquarters on the order of the apex court.
Ashraf said that police have also removed road blockades outside the residences of former prime minister Nawaz Sharif, Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif, Canada-based cleric Dr Tahirul Qadri and slain governor Salmaan Taseer. Responding to a question about any resistance faced by police from the supporters of JuD chief Hafiz Saeed, Ashraf said: “We presented the SC order to the JuD chief before removing the barricades placed on the roads outside Qadsia headquarters of JuD.”
The JuD had placed barricades more than 10 years ago outside its headquarters in Chauburji blocking the main roads there. The blockade had been causing immense problems to motorists and local residents but no one neither dared to raise a voice nor filed a petition in the court apparently because of the fear of the JuD men. The JuD is believed to be the front organisation for the LeT which is responsible for carrying out the Mumbai attack that killed 166 people. It has been declared as a foreign terrorist organisation by the US in June 2014.
Justice Nisar had issued the order while hearing a suo motu case regarding blockade of roads in the city by politicians and private people. When the law officer told the court that the barricades had been installed outside the residences of different ‘VIPs’ as they have threats to their lives, Nisar said, “Even I have been receiving constant threats. Go and construct bomb-proof walls for your houses, have snipers on rooftops, but do not block roads.”