The local administration has banned the entry of six Ulema belonging to different sects and put army on high alert in the capital to maintain peace during the holy month of Muharram, a senior official told Dawn .The official said the decision regarding banning the entry of Ulema was taken in a meeting held in the office of chief commissioner Islamabad.
â€œIn view of security threats we have banned the entry of eight Ulema under Maintenance of Public Order,â€ said the official. Those were banned from entering into the capital included Maulana Ahmed Ludhianvi (Punjab), Allama Muzzafar Hussain Najfi, Maulana Abdul Majeed, Maulana Abdul Khaliq Rehmani, Syed Maqbool Hussain, and Allama Ghazanfar Taunsavi (Punjab).
The official added that army would remain alert in barracks and they could be called out for assistance of the district administration in maintaining peace.
Elaborating preventive measures adopted by the district administration, the official said section 144 had been imposed against wall chalking, display and firing of arms, literature, distribution of books and pamphlets, use of loud speakers, playing of cassettes and holding of processions and rallies other than Azadari (mourning) processions and rallies.
â€œNobody would be allowed to hold Azadari meetings outside Imambargahs and other specified places,â€ the official said.
To a question, he said a traffic plan was being prepared to provide alternate routes to the commuters during Muharram 8 and 9 and special arrangements have been made for the women participating Azadari meetings and processions.
Talking about administrative measures, he said Capital Development Authority had been asked to cover open manholes and trim bushes and trees on the routes of processions. Similarly Islamabad Electric Supply Company (Iesco) was asked to provide better lighting arrangements en route.
All hospitals of the federal capital would remain on high alert during Muharram 8, 9 and 10 to provide prompt medical treatment, if required.
Security had been tightened in the vicinity of all mosques, Imambargahs, airport, exit and entrance points of city, bus stands and other public places while personnel of different law enforcement agencies had been deployed in different commercial areas in plain clothes to keep vigilance on the activities of suspicious persons.
Talking about religious groups, he said all religious parties assured their full cooperation to police in their efforts to maintain law and order during Muharram. The official said police had also chalked out a separate security plan under which they had increased police patrolling in sensitive areas of the city.