Islamabad [Pakistan], June 28 (ANI): Karachi Police on Tuesday used tear gas and baton-charged people who were protesting against frequent power cuts.
The police action came after the protestors refused to vacate the main road, the Dawn newspaper reported.
The protestors blocked the roads, burnt tyres and traffic was suspended from the ICI bridge to the Lyari Expressway for over 15 hours.
A major traffic jam was caused by a long queue of large trailers, and trucks also blocked the road connecting the ICI bridge to the SITE area and Mauripur Road.
Footage showed police commandos firing tear gas at the demonstrators who were chanting slogans against the power utility management and demanding restoration of supply, the local media added.
Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP) Asif Bughio stated that the protestors dispersed after the police action, but the protests recommenced shortly.
Bughio mentioned that electricity was suspended since 4 pm yesterday in several areas of Lyari.
"Due to prolonged disruption in the power supply, hundreds of residents blocked the road for hours," he said.
The senior police superintendent mentioned that their first priority was to resolve the issue through talks, but the protestors attacked them with stones when they tried to negotiate.
The police reached out to the KE management to "placate" the protesters and prevent the situation from escalating, the Dawn reported citing Bughio.
The protest comes amid Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif's warnings that the country might face increased load-shedding in the coming month of July.
His comments came during a meeting with PML-N members of the National Assembly and allied parties in the federal capital, reported Geo News.
The PM said that Pakistan could not get its required liquefied natural gas (LNG) supply, but that the coalition government is trying to make the deal possible.
Pakistan is facing an escalation of its power crisis after it failed to agree on a deal for natural gas supply next month. Tenders for July were scrapped due to high price, and low participation as the nation is already taking action to tackle widespread blackouts.
Pakistan's government is attempting to boost energy conservation, has cut working hours for public servants and ordered shopping malls to factories to shut early in various cities, including Karachi. (ANI)