Pak govt crackdown on opposition: Several held ahead of Gurjanwala rally

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Islamabad [Pakistan], October 14 (ANI): Ahead of an anti-government protest by the newly formed Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM) in Punjab's Gujranwala on October 16, the Imran Khan government has started a crackdown on the Pakistani Muslim League (Nawaz), or PML(N), and other opposition parties, part of the alliance.
According to Pakistani media reports, several people have been arrested, including some from Sadr in Lahore, and corner meetings hampered in view of the rally.
On Wednesday, former Pakistan prime minister Nawaz Sharif tweeted: "Police must NOT comply with Imran Niazi's unlawful orders to arrest PMLN/PDM's workers, raid their homes or hinder their travel to Gujranwala."
Pakistani media reports stated that a COVID FIR was filed at Gujranwala police station against the opposition parties' members and workers.
Former speaker Ayaz Sadiq, another PML(N) leader, said that now the government had increased testing for COVID-19, earlier, it was hiding facts.
"But despite the government tactics to foil the rally, the PDM is all set to hold the protest, even on roads, on October 16," he asserted.
Meanwhile, PDM spokesperson Mian Iftikhar Hussain has condemned the removal of the banners in Gujranwala for the opposition rally, The News International reported.
Hussain said that the PDM would hold its rally in Gujranwala at any cost and asked the government to stop using state resources on undemocratic acts. "Pakistan public is fed up with the Imran Khan government and wants to get rid of this cruel set-up," he claimed.
The major political parties in Pakistan have formed the alliance - PDM -- with an aim to oust the Imran Khan government.
Earlier this month, the Pakistan Muslim League (Nawaz) had slammed the Imran Khan government saying that "political revolution" in the country would be possible only through the newly formed PDM, adding that opposition leaders are being "silenced" for speaking against a "corrupt" government.
The PDM has proposed to launch a mass protest campaign, comprising public gatherings, political rallies, no-confidence motions, en masse resignations from Assemblies, and, finally, a long march in January that will culminate in a sit-in in Islamabad until their demands are met. (ANI)