ISLAMABAD - An important security meeting at the ministry of interior Saturday reviewed the overall security situation of the twin cities keeping in view the ongoing military operation in North Waziristan Agency (NWA) and discussed the possible security strategy of government during the announced long march of PTI on the Independence Day.

A meeting was held at the ministry of interior under the chair of Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Khan.

The federal government had already given police powers to the army troops and Rangers deployed in the federal capital under the Anti-Terrorism Act, 1997 soon after it announced to start operation Zarb-e-Azb in NWA. These powers have been given through a notification to counter any backlash of militants on the federal capital because of the operation.

An official source informed that the police and district administration of the capital and garrison city Rawalpindi gave their input to tackle the security situation and marchers both during the likely long march of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) in Islamabad on August 14.

The government has also requested the PTI chief Imran Khan to either change the date of the march or cancel this as it was planning to celebrate Independence Day at the same venue where the opposition party had announced to hold march in front of the Parliament House.

Chaudhry Nisar during the meeting directed the district and police administration of Rawalpindi and Islamabad to keep the security of twin cities on high alert, as the situation is sensitive in wake of the ongoing operation in North Waziristan, says an official handout issued by the ministry.

The minister said that security agencies needed to work beyond the call of their duty and show utmost responsibility in order to counter any unfortunate incident.

Reviewing the overall security plans of twin cities, the chair said that there should be a state-of-the-art coordination between security apparatus of twin cities for better tackling the emergency situations. He also asked the police force to further enhance its capacity by means of physical training and modern equipment.

Nisar directed the district and police administration to keep the security of sensitive places extremely tight. He said that surprise search operation especially in adjoining areas of Benazir Bhutto International Airport Islamabad be made more intensive. He said that joint patrolling teams of Rangers and police have given a sense of security to the residents but their services needed to be made more target-oriented and effective. Rangers and police vehicles had started their joint patrolling in the capital a couple of weeks ago under the directions of the ministry.

City Police Officer (CPO) Rawalpindi and SSP Islamabad briefed the meeting about the security plans, ongoing search operations and their results in their jurisdictions.

Secretary interior, commissioner Rawalpindi, DCO Rawalpindi, CPO Rawalpindi, SSP Islamabad, chief commissioner Islamabad, Acting IG Islamabad and AIG Special Branch attended the meeting.