Qadri long march left Islamabad in mess

http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2013118story_18-1-2013_pg11_7
Qadri’s long march took away capital’s charm

ISLAMABAD: Islamabad was once the most charming and clean city in the country but now the capital has become a hub of rallies and it is losing its charm.

The long march and sit-in led by Dr Tahirul Qadri ruined the charm of the capital as thousands of marchers from different parts of the country left behind a lot of garbage on the roadsides.

Rallies and Dharnas are the democratic rights of citizens but the locals face a lot of problems due to this. A survey of the Blue Area and its vicinities revealed that due to the long march led by Dr Qadri students could not attend their schools,the attendance in offices was thin, mobile phone networks were suspended, banks and their Automated Teller Machines (ATMs) were found closed as a security precaution.

“Security arrangements on the eve of Qadri’s long march had effectively turned the capital into a ghost town as the majority of citizens chose to remain indoors and very few people went outside,” said Shagufta Parveen.

She also said, “In a democratic culture we know it is common to conduct rallies but we do not understand why Dr Tahirul Qadri put the lives of thousands of innocent people especially of women and children in danger.”

Shagufta added that people usually go to Islamabad in the winters to enjoy the weather.

Khurram Bhatti also expressed the same feelings and said that Dr Tahirul Qadri should realise that a lot of women and children became ill due to the cold weather conditions. It was reported that around 170 people were hospitalised.

“I have not gone to my office for the last five days and two of my sons have not gone to their school because it has been closed due to the long march,” he added. He also said that frequent holidays in schools and colleges may prove harmful for students as their annual examinations were around the corner and appealed to politicians to avoid disrupting routine lives of the people for their personal political point scoring.

“Government of the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) and its coalition partners is on a democratic path but unnecessary rallies cannot be in favour of democracy, so these should be avoided,” said Bushra Shahid.

Bushra also said that Qadri launched the long march just to gain political influence but he has never thought of the conditions and the marchers are the ultimate sufferers as he himself kept sitting in a “Bullet proof luxury bunker”.

She added that the weather was cold and it added to the miseries of the participants of the long march. She also said that Dr Qadri did not think of food and other necessities required for the survival of the marchers.

Bushra also said that all the political parties in the country opposed Dr Qadri for his harsh statements and criticised his stubborn attitude for putting lives of women and children in jeopardy.

A senior official in Islamabad district administration said that millions of rupees were spent on security arrangements. The official added that they had been arranging accommodation and food for the policemen who had been called from other provinces.

The official also said that the same amount could have been spent on other productive purposes. He added that many policemen became ill and some of them were also hospitalised. app

Categories: Pakistan

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