ISLAMABAD - A high-level consultative meeting, held with Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif in the chair, yesterday gave a go ahead to law-enforcement agencies to clear D-Chowk of the protesters and further decided to make impeccable security arrangements to check sit-ins in front of the Parliament House in future.

Sources aware of the deliberations of the meeting revealed the government, in consultation with other political stakeholders, was considering introducing some legislation for a permanent ban on protests and demonstrations in front of the Parliament to avoid such an embarrassing situation for the country in future.

A detailed view of the situation was given to the participants of the meeting by Federal Interior Minister Ch Nisar Ali Khan, but the prime minister seemed a bit annoyed over the laxity on part of the police force of both the federal capital and the Punjab and stressed the need of more cohesive coordination among the law-enforcement and intelligence agencies.

Prominent among those who attended the consultative meeting were Interior Minister Ch Nisar, Information and Broadcasting Minister Pervaiz Rashid, Finance Minister Ishaq Dar, Railways Minister Khawaja Saad Rafiq, States and Frontier Regions Minister Abdul Qadir Baloch, Senator Mushahidullah and PM’s advisers, Dr Asif Kirmani and Irfan Siddiqi.

The sources revealed the participants unanimously opined that the protesters should be removed from the place as soon as possible as the sit-in in such a sensitive area would give an impression worldwide that the government could not maintain order even in its capital.

The prime minister, however, directed the authorities to use minimum possible force to disperse the protesters from the area. He also told the interior minister that he wanted the area to be cleared in next 24 hours.

The prime minister further directed the interior minister to come up with a foolproof security plan not only for the Red Zone but also for the whole federal capital so that such a practice of staging sit-ins in front of the Parliament or other sensitive areas in the capital could be effectively checked in future.

The sources said the government could ban all sorts of demonstrations and public rallies in the federal capital while some legislation on it could also be introduced in the coming days after taking all the political stakeholders on board.

The meeting also talked about overall security situation in the country while the massive operations across the Punjab in the follow-up of the Lahore terror attack also came under discussion, the sources said, adding the prime minister had expressed his resolve to show zero tolerance toward such subversive activities across the country.