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Military rangers deployed as dissent grows in PoJK

Pakistan Rangers officers (File Photo/Reuters)

Pakistan military rangers were deployed in Pakistan occupied Jammu and Kashmir (PoJK) on Sunday to control violent protests that erupted in the region, The News International reported.

The decision was taken on the call of the Awami Action Committee (AAC) as the protests against the high electricity bills and taxes entered the third day on Sunday.

The development comes after clashes between the police and protestors erupted in Mirpur during demonstrations that killed a policeman and injured over 70.

Meanwhile, mobile services have also been affected in many areas after mobile phone and internet services were suspended in different parts of PoJK including Bhimber, Mirpur, and Bagh Towns, The News International reported.

Moreover, the central leadership of the AAC has distanced itself from the violent incidents that occurred during the protests.

One of the AAC members, Sajid Jagwal, said their movement is peaceful. He said that they had been sitting for two days and no incident had happened.

Another member, Tauseef Mansoor, said that the committee has nothing to do with the two to three incidents that have happened during the protests.

Anjuman Tajran President Sahabzada Waqas said that the protest was not against the state or any institution.

“This army is ours and this country is ours. We are neither against the army nor against Pakistan or any other institution,” said the president.

Yasir Hussain Naqvi, another member of the AAC, said that they are not persuasive of destruction as these are their properties. “These institutions are ours and police is ours,” he added.

Naqvi further said that the demands of the protestors are legitimate, and there is no demand that cannot be resolved.

Pakistan Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif will convene a high-level meeting on Monday to discuss the ongoing situation in the region, ARY News reported.

Earlier, PM Sharif on Sunday also spoke to the prime minister of PoJK and directed the Pakistan Muslim League-N office bearers in the region to engage with the leaders of the action committee to find a peaceful resolution.

Pakistan Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif has said that he is “deeply concerned” about it and added that there is also no tolerance for taking the law into one’s own hands and damaging government properties.

At least one police officer was killed and 90 others were wounded after violent clashes erupted in Pakistan-occupied Jammu and Kashmir (PoJK) during the ongoing protests and shutter down strike across the region, Dawn reported on Saturday.