LAHORE   -  Mourning processions would not be allowed across the province on the occasion of Hazrat Ali (R.A) Day this year, Inspector General of Police (IGP) Punjab Inam Ghani here on Sunday said.

According to the orders of the provincial government and guidelines of the NCOC, mourning processions were not allowed across the province on Hazrat Ali (R.A) Day this year, he added. 

He expressed these views while presiding over a meeting on security arrangements for Hazrat Ali (R.A) Day at the camp office.

He further said that on Hazrat Ali (R.A) Day, only Majalis would be held in the province under strict implementation of standard operating procedures (SOPs) of Coronavirus for which police teams would provide full security. 

The IGP further said that love for Ahl-e-Bayt was a part of our faith but the decision not to hold the procession was taken only to stop the spread of the pandemic.  

He said “No one including the government wants the processions in memory of Ahl-e- Bayt to be stopped in our country but the gravity of the situation is in front of everyone.” 

He directed the police officers to work with the district administration to take the license holders and organizers of the processions into confidence not to hold processions and if a procession was taken out anywhere in the province, the organizers would face legal action. 

He further said that irresponsible behaviour of the citizens could lead to a serious increase in the spread of coronavirus, therefore the organizers of the gatherings and the mourners should be required to strictly implement the SOPs.  

He further said that all available resources should be utilised for the security of Hazrat Ali (R.A) Day gatherings across the province under a comprehensive strategy while ensuring best arrangements while at the same time complying with SOPs and government orders regarding prevention of corona. He further said that modern equipment like metal detectors, walk-through gates and CCTV monitoring should be fully utilised during security arrangements in all the districts while expert snipers should be deployed on roof top for security of  A category Majalis.

The IGP  said that commandos in plain clothes should be deployed for the protection of mourners while women personnel should be deployed for the convenience and protection of female mourners.

 He further said that the police officers and personnel deployed on security duty should also strictly enforce the implementation of coronavirus SOPs so that they could perform their duties of service and safety of the citizens while remaining safe from the virus. 

He further said that, in collaboration with the Special Branch and other law enforcement agencies, search, sweep, combing and intelligence-based operations should be ensured in the vicinity of sensitive imambargahs and mosques, while security personnel should be informed about the sensitivity of duty in the current situation and special briefings should also be given in this regard. The meeting reviewed in detail the steps being taken for the security of Majalis across the province.

 During the meeting, all the RPOs and DPOs briefed the IGP on the security arrangements and said that the recommendations of the organisers and local notables had been taken into consideration during the security arrangements of the meetings and the police officers and personnel had a passion for service and duty. 

 They will perform their duties with dedication as this is the main duty and mission of the police force. 

Instructing the officers, the IGP said that if any district needed any help in terms of security arrangements, the operations branch of the Central Police Office should be informed immediately so that there was no impediment to their immediate delivery.  

 Additional IG Operations Sahibzada Shehzad Sultan, CCPO Lahore Ghulam Mehmood Dogar, Additional IG CTD Wasim Ahmed Khan, DIG Operations Lahore Sajid Kayani, RPO Sheikhupura Dr Inam Waheed and DIG Operations Sohail Sukhera were present in the meeting. 

Other officers including all the RPOs, CPOs and DPOs of the province participated through video link.