ISLAMABAD - Supporters of Pakistan Tehrik-e-Insaf (PTI) have pitched tents at D-Chowk, besides arranging stock of essential items, as they have been told by party’s top leadership to ensure long stay at the protest venue.

PTI MPAs in Punjab and KP provinces have arranged the tents for supporters of their respective constituencies in order to facilitate participants in provision of food and shelter at Islamabad after Imran Khan warned that he would personally interview candidates next time and only those who would demonstrate determination on Constitution Avenue will get tickets.

“We are here for a long stay. I have arranged this pavilion for people of Mardan. My supporters will get food, bed and other essential items till Imran Khan calls off the long march,” PTI MPA Iftikhar Mashwani told The Nation on Monday.

On both sides of Parade Venue, tents have been pitched by each PTI lawmaker displaying name of district on front of the make-shift shelters in order to attract PTI’s supporters from different parts of the country to stay in the tents for ensuring maximum participation of protesters.

“We plan long stay here. We have been directed to stay 15 days more at the venue. This is why we have established a separate tent for people of Karak district,” said PTI MPA Gul Sahib Khan who represents Karak in KP Assembly.

Nobody at D-Chowk seems optimistic about the positive outcome of peace talks between the government and PTI and Pakistan Awami Tehrik (PAT), as Imran Khan is adamant on seeking resignation of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif while the government, which is backed by opposition parties in the parliament, does not seem to bow down.

Even the PTI lawmakers too are not sure about the possible end of the prolonged sit-in and they obey what their leader Imran Khan directs them through Saifullah Khan Niazi, the organiser of the long march.

“The only thing we are supposed to do is to ensure our presence and bring more people to the spot. Only our elders know exactly what is going on between the government and our party,” Malik Qasim Khan, advisor on prison to chief minister KP, told The Nation.

Several PTI workers feel exhausted due to their long stay in Islamabad and wish a solution to the crisis but, according to some of them, their leader Imran Khan will never surrender until Premier Sharif tenders resignation.

The shelter arranged by PTI lawmakers is not enough to accommodate the participants, forcing several political workers to take shelter in other places or stay with their friends and relatives in the federal capital.

“I cannot sleep on grass without pillow. Tents are saturated with people and one can hardly find enough space to sleep at night. I come at evening for listening to the speech of Imran Khan and go back for staying outside,” Murid Khan, a PTI worker and resident of Swabi, said.

Some PTI workers who have been brought from far-flung areas of KP on August 14 have not returned to their native villages. For them the venue of protest is their second home and sometimes they share shelter and food with nearby PAT followers.

“I don’t want to go back to my village. I have nothing important to do at my village. I am jobless and I like to be in Islamabad,” Muhebullah Khan, 24, a resident of Bannu, told The Nation.