Protest against ‘injustice’ to Shia pilgrims near border

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SUKKUR: Pilgrims from different towns of Punjab travelling to Iran in 11 coaches on Thursday were intercepted near the Sindh-Balochistan border at Zero Point of Jacobabad for security reasons. According to reports, the pilgrims were de-boarded near the border for a security check which irked leaders of Shia organisations, who then along with the passengers held a protest in the area.

As a result of the protest, the route was blocked and flow of traffic towards Sindh, Balochistan and Punjab was affected with vehicles stranded in long queues.

Talking to reporters, the Shia leaders, including provincial leader of the Majlis-i-Wahdatul Muslimeen, Allama Maqsood Ali Domki, complained that the Balochistan government had stopped 11 passenger coaches carrying pilgrims from different areas of Punjab, including Multan, Jhang and Dera Ghazi Khan, over security reasons that according to the protesters was injustice.

They were of the view that it was the responsibility of the police to provide protection to people instead of creating problems for them, adding that if there was a security threat, they should make proper arrangements and provide safety to the pilgrims.

The pilgrims, said the leaders, were facing a lot of difficulties during their stay for the security check.

The sit-in continued for more than two hours and was eventually called off after Naseerabad DIG Sharjeel Kharl intervened and negotiated with the protesters. The pilgrims then resumed their journey. Another protest was reportedly held in Balochistan because of the same reason.

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