FAISALABAD/SARGODHA – The Punjab Cabinet Committee on Muharram Arrangements members led by its chairman visited Faisalabad and reviewed security plan for the holy month during a meeting held at Circuit House on Wednesday.

The meeting was also attended by Punjab Minister for Law Rana Sanaullah Khan, members of the Cabinet Committee, Punjab Chief Secretary Nasir Mehmood Khosa, Home Secretary Shahid Khan, IGP Haji Habibur Rehman, the divisional commissioner, RPO Aftab Ahmad Cheema, CPO Bilal Siddique Kamyana, DCOs and DPOs of Jhang, TT Singh, Chiniot and Faisalabad, MPA Muhammad Islam, Muhammad Nawaz, Muhammad Afzal, Ajmal Asif, Maj (r) Abdul Rehman Rana, Sutan Sikandar and Tahir Hussain.

Sardar Zulfiqar Ali Khosa, the chairman and senior adviser to Punjab chief minister, directed the divisional and district administrations to ensure implementation of the code of conduct issued by the Ittehad Bainul-Muslimeen Secretariat. He asked them to maintain religious harmony during the month at all costs. He directed that no innovations or deviation from any existing Muharram processions routes be allowed.

He directed the officials to keep an eye on the activities of anti-social elements, deal strictly with those found involved in sectarian violence in accordance with the law irrespective of their political affiliation besides ensuring strict implementation of the ban imposed on some religious speakers. The senior adviser reiterated the government's resolve to maintain peace and harmony and said the public should not face inconvenience due to stringent security measures taken by the police. 

He directed that a ban on pillion riding should not be imposed across the city, but it should be restricted to the specific routs of processions only. Rana Sanaullah directed the administrations of all the four districts of Faisalabad Division to resolve all sectarian disputes and irritants connected with Muharram well before time and said that important processions be monitored in a scientific manner. He directed that the Core Management Team hold meetings with the organisers of processions and Majalis to resolve conflicts. In case any empty building en-route is found locked, it must be thoroughly searched before the event to avoid its misuse by the terrorists, he added.

Chief Secretary Nasir Mehmood Khosa directed to launch a special drive for checking the number plates of vehicles and motorcycles in collaboration with the Excise Department. The IGP directed the police officers to sensitise all the police force in the police lines about the Muharram security plan to avoid any security lapse.

The divisional commissioner and RPO gave detailed briefing about the checklist comprising 130 points regarding Muharram arrangements to the Cabinet Committee.  The Commissioner told the meeting that the telephone numbers of District Emergency Cell and Quick Response Cell will be displayed on important places for the public to inform the authorities about any untoward incident.

Meanwhile, Sargodha DCO and SSP briefed the visiting Cabinet Committee members at Circuit House. Commissioner Shaukat Ali and DIG Sargodha also informed the security plan in Sargodha Division (Sargodha, Khushab, Mianwali and Bhakkar) for Muharram.

He further said leaves of policemen have been cancelled so that they could perform their duties during Ashura. Regional Police Officer Sargodha Amjid Javid Saleemi said that 1,233 processions and 5,264 majalis will be held in the region. He said entry of 184 speakers into the the four districts have been banned and 37 speakers have been gagged. Senior Superintendent of Police Dr Muhammad Rizwan said that Muharram Control Rooms have been set up and a peace committee comprising scholars and members of the civil society had been constituted.