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Nawaz resumes journey to Lahore on day 4 of GT Road rally

Source: Geo • 9 days ago
Nawaz arrives on stage and waves to the crowd on day three of his homecoming rally 

GUJRANWALA: Former prime minister Nawaz Sharif left Gujranwala for Lahore Saturday afternoon on the fourth day of his GT Road rally.

Preparations to welcome the ousted prime minister in Lahore were in full swing, as locals decorated Shahdara Chowk and other venues with posters and banners of Nawaz Sharif.

Ravi Road, all the way from Shahdara to Daata Darbar, was closed to traffic from 9am onwards ahead of Nawaz’s arrival.

PML-N workers and supporters set up stages in different areas of the city as part of the preparations to greet the former PM.

Nawaz's cavalcade, on its way to Lahore, will pass through Kamoke and Muridke, where eager supporters gathered in the morning to greet the former PM. It will then enter Lahore through Shahdara.

A group of PML-N workers, led by Foreign Minister Khawaja Asif, reached Gujranwala from PML-N House Sialkot to welcome Nawaz earlier today.

Addressing a consultative meeting in Gujranwala before setting off for Lahore, Nawaz said the Supreme Court judges did not do justice to him.

“If not taking salary from my son is crime then taking salary from my son would also have been declared a crime,” he lamented, adding, “The decision to disqualify me was pre-planned.”

“It is about time the public’s votes are valued,” he said.

Meanwhile, City Traffic Police Lahore (CTPL) has issued a comprehensive traffic plan during the rally, which is expected to reach Lahore later in the day.

According to the plan, Gujranwala GT Road to Imamia Colony Phatak, Shahdara, Niazi Chowk, Timber Market, Azadi Flyover, U-turn, Peer Makki and Daata Darbar will remain closed for traffic. The commuters were directed to avoid travelling on GT Road and use the motorway instead.

The motorway will be opened for all kinds of traffic from Thokar Niaz Baig and Babu Sabu interchange. The Sagian Bridge will also be opened for motorists coming from Faisalabad, Gujranwala and Sheikhopura.

The Metro Bus service will be closed from Shahdara to MAO College, but will continue to run from MAO to Gajjumata.

Day three

Addressing a massive crowd to loud chants of 'Nawaz Sharif we love you' in Gujranwala Friday night, the former PM said conspiracies were being hatched against his government for the previous three and a half years and pledged to make Pakistan a great country.

Nawaz also paid tribute to the child who was killed earlier in the day in Lalamusa, and said he would visit the child's household and help them as much as he could. He also prayed for the child's soul.

"He was the first martyr of our struggle," said Nawaz.

In Gujrat on the third day of his rally, Nawaz again asked for support to help him bring change to the country.

Playing to the crowd of supporters, Nawaz asked if the people had accepted the verdict against his premiership. The question received a resounding chorus from the crowd which answered in the negative.

"Have you accepted the court’s decision? My appeal is in your court. Nawaz Sharif’s appeal is in your court."

Reiterating his statements from his address a day earlier in Jhelum, Nawaz said the mandate of the people was torn apart when he was kicked out of office.

He added that it was a matter of respect of 200 million people and no individual could take this right from the people.

The PML-N supremo, on his way to Gujranwala, some 100 kilometres from Jhelum, was greeted by hordes of supporters in Sarai Alamgir, Kharian, Lala Musa and Gujrat.

Day two

Addressing his supporters in Jhelum on Thursday evening, Nawaz said he was not greedy for power but wanted to change Pakistan for the better.

He added that he was working towards bringing peace and prosperity to the country.

The former premier said it was the people's mandate which brought him to power and he was ousted "in a minute".

"Now, five honoured judges, ousted a democratically elected prime minister with the stroke of a pen in a minute," said Nawaz.

"There was no corruption, there was no wrong doing."

“The average for a democratically elected prime minister in Pakistan is a year and a half. Dictators rule the country for 10 years but a prime minister can not even complete his tenure.”

“Is any court to punish dictators, dictators who have violated the Constitution,” questioned the former premier.

Day one

On Wednesday, the former premier set out from Punjab House, Islamabad after deciding to go home to Lahore via the GT Road earlier.

The amassing of supporters, however, could only get him as far as Rawalpindi — forcing him to spend Wednesday night in the city.

After being disqualified by the Supreme Court on July 28 in its verdict in the Panama Papers case, Nawaz has gone to the 'people's court' to seek their verdict.

Addressing supporters at Rawalpindi late Wednesday night, he took a pledge from the people that they would get their mandate respected.

"Promise me you would get your mandate respected. Promise me you won’t allow your prime minister to be humiliated this way," he stated.

"If you do not protect your rights, they will continue to be snatched away from you," he told his supporters.