Asad Umar urges opposition to postpone rallies as COVID-19 cases soar

By Abdullah Zahid

ISLAMABAD: The Minister for Planning, Development and Special Initiatives, Asad Umar on Wednesday said that cases and deaths from novel coronavirus are rising by every passing day and urged everyone to take safety precautions to protect themselves from the disease.

Asad Umar, in a tweet on Wednesday, asked opposition parties to listen to suggestion of Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) leader Aitzaz Ahsan of postponing political rallies.

He further said that doctors, religious elements, media and every sensible person is emphasizing on need of precautions to protect lives of loved ones.

On the other hand, Maulana Fazlur Rehman, head of Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM) said that the Lahore rally on December 13 will be historic and will serve as the last nail in the government’s coffin. If any attempt is made to disrupt the rally, it will be repulsed strongly than Multan, he warned.

The jalsa in question is being hosted by PML-N at is due to take place at Lahore’s Minar-e-Pakistan ground.

Despite local administrations denying permission for public meetings owing to the second wave of coronavirus infections, the PDM has so far organised two political events — one in Peshawar and another in Multan.

Deputy Commissioner Lahore has also refused to grant permission to hold the rally at Minar-e-Pakistan due to the ongoing health crisis in the country.

It is to be noted that the Local administration of Lahore had refused a request from Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM) to hold a public gathering at the Minar-e-Pakistan owing to spike in COVID-19 cases.

Earlier, the police have asked the PDM leadership to cancel the Lahore public gathering owing to the security alert and in case of non-cancellation, has asked the opposition’s leadership including Maryam Nawaz to take precautionary measures to avoid any untoward incident.

The alert said that the political leadership should use the bullet-proof vehicles during traveling and avoid popping their heads out from the sunroof.

It also called for avoiding load speakers during the event besides also asking the political leadership to implement the COVID-19 SOPs devised by the government.

The alert further said that measures were taken to increase the security of the political leaders and venue of the public gathering.

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