Supreme Court orders govt, PTI to meet at 10 PM

Supreme Court on Wednesday ordered the government and Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) to hold dialogues later tonight.

A three-member bench of the apex court headed by Justice Ijazul Hassan and comprises of Justice Muneeb Akhtar and Justice Syed Mazahir Ali. Akbar Naqvi heard the petition of the Islamabad High Court Bar Association against harassment of PTI long march participants.

After an initial hearing, the top court ordered the local administration to provide Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) space between Sector H9 and G9 of Islamabad for protest and also release arrested lawyers. The permission was granted on the assurance of the PTI not to damage public and private property and the court directed not to disrupt the flow of traffic on Srinagar Highway.

Supreme Court ordered not to arrest the PTI workers and leaders and people arrested on political grounds should be released immediately.

The apex court observed that it hope that the top leadership will instruct its workers not to take the law into their own hands and administration will end the use of force immediately.

Earlier today, Supreme Court had directed the government to provide suitable spot to Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) for its long march.

During the hearing, Justice Ijaz ul Ahsan remarked that PTI should lodge its protest and go back while government should devise a traffic plan for long march venue. We would also seek assurances from the PTI, he added.

The court further remarked that it hopes government will reopen roads and lift blockages. “If the PTI fears arrests, it should provide us with a list. We will protect those who fear arrests.”

Justice Ahsan said political parties had their own interests but they were secondary to the country and the people. He also observed that emergency had been imposed in all hospitals in the capital while schools and transport had been closed.

The country was at a critical juncture economically and on the verge of bankruptcy, he remarked. “Will the country be shut down for every protest?” he asked. All exams had been postponed, roads blocked and businesses closed, he observed.

Attorney General Ausaf told the court he did not know the details and sought time to get information. At this, Justice Naqvi observed half of the Supreme Court s staff had been unable to reach the premises because of barricades.

Attorney General Ausaf argued that the PTI had “threatened a bloody march”, adding that while he was against blocking roads, “unavoidable” steps had to be taken to protect the lives and properties of citizens.

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