PTI holds public rally at Minar-e-Pakistan amid 'threat alert' 

PTI holds public rally at Minar-e-Pakistan amid 'threat alert' 

Lahore (Web Desk): The Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) is all set to hold public rally at Minar-e-Pakistan tonight (Saturday) despite the 'threat alert' issued by the caretaker Punjab government.

According to the alert terrorists, carrying explosive material, may either target political rallies or law enforcers deployed for the security of those events.

The alert also stated that the terrorists could also target Imran Khan’s residence, Zaman Park, in Lahore.

Authorities concerned have issued directives to the police, the Counter-Terrorism Department (CTD), and other agencies to ensure security at the Minar-e-Pakistan.

The police on Saturday launched a crackdown against PTI workers ahead of party's public gathering at Minar-e-Pakistan tonight while the Lahore administration placed container to block the routes leading to the venue.

The road heading from Data Darbar towards Minar-e-Pakistan has been closed off from both sides and the roads have also been blocked near Shah Alam Market Chowk, Lahore Railway Station, Rang Mahal, and Taxali Gate, Shahdara Chowk and Ravi Bridge were also closed by placing containers.

On the other hand, the administration and police have taken the step to block PTI supporters from other towns and cities in Punjab from reaching the rally venue.

According to the PTI leadership, the police detained party's leaders and workers, saying that raids on the houses of PTI workers and leaders have been ongoing for five consecutive days.

However, they said that despite the "tactics of the police and administration", the rally will definitely take place today.

But caretaker Punjab Information Minister Amir Mir said that people are not being restricted from going to the rally through barriers, but the law enforcement agencies were ensuring citizens' protection through these measures.

In a statement, the minister said that the workers of any political party are not being prevented from joining the rally and that the government has given permission to PTI to hold the event.

Earlier today, PTI Chairman and former premier Imran Khan called on his supporters to “assert their right as people of a free nation” by attending the rally.

Khan said that the PTI would be holding its sixth public gathering at Minar-e-Pakistan, which he felt would “break all records”.

While expressing concerns that the government may erect obstacles to prevent party supporters from reaching the venue, the PTI chief said that it was the fundamental right of the people to participate in a political gathering.

"Everyone must assert their right as people of a free nation that won its independence and come to Minar-e-Pakistan," the former premier told his supporters.