Friday 6 December 2019
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Dawn News - 5 days ago

Azadi March cost govt Rs240 million

ISLAMABAD: The Azadi March of the JUI in the capital cost the government over Rs240 million. This amount is payable to contractors/vendors whose services were hired for security arrangements during the 13-day sit-in, police officials told Dawn.The JUI-F staged the rally and sit-in in the capital from Oct 31 to Nov 13. In this regard, arrangements were made for lodging, meal and transportation of police called from other districts. An amount of Rs248 million was spent on the 18 days sit-in, the officers stated. Before the sit-in, the capital police sought Rs270 million for a fortnight but later had to cut it to Rs130 million on the directive of the government. But the government released a grant of Rs70m to the police out of which contractors were given some amount and asked to wait until the the police were provided more funds.The interior ministry was also approached by senior officers of the capital with a request for the release of a grant so the police could pay the bills. As many as 5,000 from the capital police along with 3,000 Frontier Constabulary, 1,500 Punjab Constabulary, 2,000 from KP police and 500 from Kashmir and railway police performed duties in the capital during the sit-in.The capital police also arranged 550 containers to block roads as a part of for the security measures and 105 vehicles to transport the personnel to their duty points and back. Containers provided by one contractor were used to block the roads and the rent for each 40-foot container was Rs20,000 a day and that for a 20-foot container Rs14,000. Around 105 vehicles, including 88 buses, were provided by one contractor and the rent of a bus was Rs25,000 per day and a wagon/truck Rs15,000 a day. The amount of fuel provided to these vehicles for transportation of the personnel cost the police Rs20m, said the officials.The capital police also purchased anti-riot gears to deal with the participants of the sit-in but no confrontation took place during the 13 days. There were some other expenses, including rent of nine buildings hired for the force requisitioned from other provinces. It may be mentioned that an amount of Rs695.6 million was spent during the sit-in of the PTI and PAT in 2014. Published in Dawn, December 1st, 2019


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