Islamabad - The Christian residents of the twin cities are celebrating Christmas with traditional zeal and zest today (Monday).

The Christian residents had started preparations for their religious festival a couple of weeks ahead of the day, which reached to the climax on Sunday. Shopping centres in the twin cities witnessed the Christian residents buying various items for the festival, including Santa Claus dresses and decorated trees.

Also, Christian colonies in Islamabad were beautifully decorated with lights. The Christians offered prayers in the churches for solidarity of the country and prosperity of the people. Various functions were held in the churches to mark the festival.

In Islamabad, State Minister for Capital Administration and Development Tariq Fazal Chaudhry cut a cake in connection with the Christmas in a local hotel. Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) Senator Rehman Malik also cut a cake together with members of the party’s minority wing.

Today, members of the religious minority will visit one another, after which they will go out of homes to parks and other places to celebrate the festival with their friends and family members.

As security situation in the country has become relatively good, the minority community members are celebrating the event with more passion than before.

 However, in view of the Quetta church attack a week ago, the authorities have chalked out plan for providing security to the churches in the twin cities. For the purpose, heavy contingents of police and other security personnel have been deputed at the churches to avert any untoward incident.

In Rawalpindi, elaborate security arrangements have been made by city police, deploying as many as 3,500 police personnel in the city to ensure security of the churches and public places.

According to a police spokesman, ladies police, personnel of special branch and elite force under the supervision of three SPs, 11 DSPs and 21 SHOs would be deployed to make security arrangements foolproof on Dec 25.

No one will be allowed to park vehicle near the churches. Walk-through gates will be installed at the entrance of the churches and the visitors will be checked through metal detectors. Best possible security arrangements will be ensured to avoid any untoward incident in the city, he added.

The security duty at public places including parks would be made more effective, he said, adding that the security had also been tightened at the entry and exit points of the city and special checking was ordered for this special occasion.

He said that the City Police Officer (CPO) Israr Ahmed Khan Abbasi had directed the SPs, DSPs and SHOs to ensure effective patrolling in their respective areas.

 

 

monitoring desk