Lahore:Chief Minister Punjab Shahbaz Sharif presided over a high level meeting here today which decided that foolproof security arrangements will be made for Muharram-ul-Haram while a comprehensive security plan will be evolved and its strict implementation will be ensured. The meeting further decided that stern action without any discrimination will be taken against the elements delivering provocative speeches and distributing hatred-based literature. Issuing instructions for activating peace committees throughout the province, the Chief Minister directed that special measures should be taken for the security of mosques and Imam Bargahs. It was further decided that the Cabinet committee headed by Senior Advisor Sardar Zulfiqar Ali Khan Khosa will visit all divisions of the province during Ashura-e- Muharram-ul-Haram and submit a report to the Chief Minister after reviewing arrangements for the maintenance of law and order.
Senior Advisor Sardar Zulfiqar Ali Khan Khosa, Provincial Law Minister Rana Sanaullah Khan, Senator Pervaiz Rashid, Chief Secretary, Home Secretary, Inspector General Police Punjab, Secretary Information, Commissioner Lahore Division and senior officers concerned were present in the meeting. The Chief Minister said that Islam is a religion of peace and amity and there is a dire need for maintaining sectarian harmony during Muharram-ul-Haram. He said that all possible steps will be taken for the maintenance of a peaceful atmosphere during Muharram-ul-Haram and the nefarious designs of the elements fanning sectarian differences will be thwarted while stern action will be taken against them. He said that the enemy wants to destabilize the country and there is a need to foil its evil designs through the force of unity. He directed that a close contact should be maintained with Ulema for ensuring law and order, promotion of religious harmony and creation of an atmosphere of religious brotherhood.
He said that Assembly Members and workers of Pakistan Muslim League-N should also play a proactive role for maintenance of peace and tranquility during Muharram-ul-Haram. The Chief Minister directed that a command and control room should be set up in the provincial metropolis and security arrangements should be closely monitored. Provincial Ministers will visit various divisions during Ashura-e- Muharram-ul-Haram and supervise security arrangements. He said that there is a need for close coordination between law enforcement agencies and they should devise an effective system of intelligence sharing. He said that the ban on misuse of loudspeakers, wall-chalking and display of firearms should be strictly enforced. He further directed that special security arrangements should be made in sensitive districts while additional force should be deputed at mosques, Imam Bargahs and other religious places. The Chief Minister directed Home Secretary and Inspector General Police to set up walk-through gates for the safety of Majalis and mourning processions while entry should be allowed into these only after checking through metal detectors.
The Chief Minister further issued instructions that the sensitive equipment should be in perfect working order. He said that maintenance of religious harmony and peace during Muharram-ul-Haram is the collective responsibility of Ulema of all schools of thought therefore they should promote religious brotherhood and tolerance through mosques and pulpits. The meeting also considered various proposals for the maintenance of peace and law and order during Muharram-ul-Haram.