LAHORE: Punjab Chief Minister Muhammad Shahbaz Sharif has said that protest of the people of Punjab over agonizing load shedding and unjustified treatment is a natural reaction.
The Chief Minister was presiding over a high level meeting held at Tent Office, Minar-e-Pakistan here on Thursday in which a comprehensive review was taken of the overall law and order in the province in the wake of the protest movement.
However, he pointed out, violence, ransacking and looting will not be tolerated at all. He said that public properties are a national asset and no patriotic person would like to damage them. He called upon the people to pinpoint black sheep who are introducing the element of violence to foil the peaceful protest movement of the people against cruel loadshedding.
The meeting expressed its satisfaction over the significant improvement in law and order situation. Senator Zulfiqar Ali Khan Khosa, Provincial Ministers Rana Sana Ullah, Mujtaba Shuja-ur-Rehman, Ch. Abdul Ghafoor, Malik Nadeem Kamran, parliamentarians, IG Punjab and other concerned officers were present on the occasion. Addressing the meeting, the Chief Minister said that people of Punjab are protesting over the corruption of federal government, intolerable price-hike and torturous load shedding.
He said that due to inordinate load shedding, industries are closing, depriving the people of their livelihood and they have been reduced to the point of hunger. However, the Chief Minister made a fervent appeal to the protestors not to damage public property and desist from violence, ransacking and arson.
He warned that strict action would be taken against those elements as would endanger human lives and damage public property. He directed that the control room should remain fully active in this regard and law and order situation be closely monitored.
He directed that district coordination officers, police, local political leadership, peace committees, ulema and notables of the area should play their potent role in keeping the protests peaceful. He asked Senator Zulfiqar Ali Khan Khosa to personally visit Gujranwala, Sahiwal and other affected areas to review the situation. IG Punjab informed the Chief Minister about the existing law and order situation in the province.