Army hasn't been deployed in Islamabad

ANI | Updated: Nov 26, 2017 02:11 IST

Islamabad [Pakistan], November 26 (ANI): Earlier on Saturday, a number of reports claimed that the troops were called in Islamabad to restore peace after a police crackdown on protesters went violent, but it turns out, the army hasn't been deployed .

According to sources, the civilian government requested the Commander 111 Brigade directly, as per the mail that was leaked to the Pakistan media, violating the protocol. The proper channel would have been through the Chief of Army Staff General (COAS), Qamar Javed Bajwa.

Several hours later, there was no sign of any army movement in Islamabad or Rawalpindi.

A statement of Pakistan's Ministry of Interior read, " pleased to authorize deployment of sufficient number of troops of Pakistan Army to be determined by the Commander 111 Brigade, in aid of civil power, to control law and order situation in Islamabad Capital Territory with effect from November 25 till further orders".

Reportedly, major social networking sites, including Facebook and Twitter, have also been blocked in the country.

As per the reports, one security official died and over 200 people were injured after the law enforcement agencies clashed with a cleric's supporters, who have been camping at national highway leading to Rawalpindi.

The cleric, Khadim Hussain Rizvi, and his followers are demanding resignation of Pakistani law minister Zahid Hamid, as they saw the change in wording of an oath sworn by the lawmakers as blasphemy.

Though the change has been reversed, the protesters continue to demand Hamid's resignation.

On Saturday, the Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (PEMRA) warned that it would not cover Faizabad sit-in during a police crackdown on the protesters.

Following the PEMRA order, there was a media blackout in Islamabad, where almost all leading private TV channels went off air.

The PEMRA has also directed the law enforcement agencies to make strict security arrangements for the staff present in different media outlets across the country. (ANI)