Punjab again imposes Section 144 in Lahore in midnight surprise ahead of PTI’s election rally

LAHORE: The caretaker setup in the country’s most populous region Punjab again imposed Section 144 in the provincial capital as PTI chief Imran Khan announced leading his party’s election campaign today.

The announcement was made as the former ruling Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) is all set to hit the streets today ahead of general elections, while the government restricted all sorts of gatherings.

In a presser, Punjab Information Minister Amir Mir announced the imposition of Section 144 in Lahore citing the terror threat and Pakistan Super League (PSL) match and a marathon in the city.

Mir, a media executive by profession, said the PTI chief announced holding rally on another important day when PSL matches will start in the provincial capital and a marathon will also be held. He, however, mentioned that the election campaign will start in Punjab on April 6, urging Imran Khan to cooperate with the provincial administration.

Minister also warned Imran Khan against hitting the road, saying stern action will be taken if anybody attempted to challenge the writ of the state.

The midnight announcement is the second time in less than a week that Punjab government has banned gatherings. On Saturday, former premier Imran Khan announced leading public rally.

He came hard on interim Punjab Chief Minister Mohsin Naqvi and IGP Usman Anwar for declaring the death of PTI worker Ali Bilal aka Zillay Shah accidental. He reiterated that Shah was murdered in police custody and demanded a judicial probe into it.

Last week, Punjab police and PTI workers came face to face, while cops fired tear gas at demonstrators armed with sticks, resulting in the death of PTI worker Ali Bilal, famously known as Zilley Shah.

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