ISLAMABAD: Islamabad’s chief commissioner is meeting with Rangers commanders and leading police officers to draw up an emergency plan to protect Shias during Muharram, government sources said today.

The plan includes a ban on up to 25 controversial clerics from both Sunni and Shia sects from entering the capital. They fear these unnamed ulema could incite violence with fiery speeches ad sermons during the holy month.

The meeting is discussing the credentials of these clerics and analyzing their previous behavior and pronouncements. Their names will be circulated by Chief Commissioner’s office shortly before the beginning of Muharram next week. The ban will prevent those listed from speaking publicly about religion or sect  but other controversial ulema will also be kept under close scrutiny, government sources said.

Other security arrangements under discussion includes increased coordination between the police, Rangers and the local administration. Another meeting will be held ahead of start of Muharram to finalise the security measures.