LAHORE: The Lahore High Court (LHC) on Wednesday allowed Pakistan Awami Tehreek (PAT) to hold protest rally with a condition to wrap it up by 12 midnight.
The court had earlier reserved the verdict in the case regarding anti-government protest rally by the joint opposition parties on the Lahore’s Mall Road. The media is also directed to not cover it after the midnight.
The LHC on Tuesday refused to issue a stay on the gathering and had issued notices to the federal and Punjab governments, IGP and Lahore DC on a petition, challenging the PAT’s protest rally along with other political parties.
A full bench, led by Justice Amin-ud-Din Khan, issued the order on a petition moved by Naeem Mir, a local trader. Justice Shahid Jamil Khan and Justice Shahid Karim Khan were the other members of the bench.
Pakistan Awami Tehreek, Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf and Pakistan Peoples’ Party are all set to stage a protest at the Faisal Chowk in front of the Punjab Assembly.
When the hearing resumed today, the Advocate General Punjab informed the court about the steps taken by the provincial government to stop the protest rally.
The AG said that the protest organizers have already been informed of the court rulings and relevant laws in this regard.
Advocate Asad Manzoor Butt, the counsel of the petitioner, argued that the planned protest on The Mall was an open violation of law and tantamount to destroying businesses besides other challenges for citizens.
The counsel argued that the protest was unconstitutional as all the opposition parties had come out against an elected government. He said the protests caused loss of millions of rupees.
Advocate AK Dogar had adopted the similar contention. Both the petitioners asked the court to order the government authorities to stop the protest.
Latif Khosa, counsel for the protesters said that it is their right to launch protests against injustices and the parties have not decided on the future course of action.
The bench reserved the verdict after the arguments were concluded.