The Islamabad High Court (IHC) on Friday ordered the capital administration to take the necessary steps to clear the Faizabad Interchange of a sit-in of religious parties by tomorrow.
The IHC, citing the difficulties faced by citizens due to blockage of the major artery, permitted the capital administration to use their authority to request Rangers or Frontier Constabulary deployment if needed.
Daily life in the capital over the past week or so has been disrupted by protesters belonging to religious parties, including the Tehreek-i-Khatm-i-Nabuwwat, Tehreek-i-Labaik Ya Rasool Allah (TLY) and the Sunni Tehreek Pakistan (ST), calling for the sacking of Law Minister Zahid Hamid and strict action against those behind the amendment to the Khatm-i-Nabuwwat oath ─ which had earlier been deemed a 'clerical error' and subsequently rectified.
The TLY had occupied the Faizabad Bridge which connects Rawalpindi and Islamabad through the Islamabad Expressway and Murree Road, both of which are the busiest roads in the twin cities.
Fed up with the public response in the twin cities, the cold response by federal government, and the rain which started Tuesday, the protesting clerics have taken to petitioning the IHC for "execution" of their demands.
Their earlier demands, most of which have been taken back now, included the removal of Federal Law Minister Zahid Hamid and Punjab Law Minister Rana Sanaullah, Asiya Bibi’s execution, dismissal of cases against religious leaders, and the removal of clerics from the Fourth Schedule.
IHC Justice Shaukat Aziz Siddiqui on Thursday heard a petition submitted by the TLY asking for a report compiled by a PML-N committee probing the controversial amendment to the oath to be made public so that "the culprits so determined therein, may very kindly be proceed against under the relevant laws."
The court, however, said a similar petition had already been filed in the IHC and advised the TLY to end its protest as the public was being inconvenienced by the sit-in.
Earlier this week, Justice Siddiqui, while hearing a petition submitted by Tehreek-i-Khatm-i-Nabuwwat supporter Allah Wasaya against the same issue, ordered to reverse in the Elections Act 2017 all amendments in sections pertaining to the Khatm-i-Nabuwwat oath.
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