People protest ban on entry to Orakzai shrine
By Our Correspondent
PARACHINAR: Hundreds of people staged a protest demonstration in Sultan area of Kurram tribal district against official ban on the entry of devotees to the shrine of Mir Syed Anwar Shah Mian in Kalaya, Orakzai tribal district.
They criticized the officials for not paying heed to their demand and asked the government to lift ban on their entry to the shrine.
The protesters demanded of Prime Minister Imran Khan and Army Chief Gen Qamar Javed Bajwa to take notice of the matterand allow the people to pay their respects at the shrine of the spiritual leader.
The saint has thousands of followers in Kurram, Orakzai, Hangu and Kohat districts of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.
Local elders, including Syed Iqbal Mian, Syed Waseh Mian, former senators Syed Sajjad Mian and Najmul Hassan, who led the protest, asked the government to lif t the ban on the entry of devotees to the shrine.
They said that peace had been restored to the area due to the sacrifices of tribal people and security forces, therefore, they should be allowed to visit the shrine and also carry out itsnecessary renovation.
It is worth mentioning here that a jirga of elders of Kurram tribal district held in Kalaya on June 12 had asked the government to open the shrinefor devotees.
The jirga also sought permission to renovate the building.
The jirga had formed a 40-member committee to discuss the issue with the provincial government and the security officials.
The shrine was closed for devotees by the security forces during militancy in the area.
Elders said that normality had returned to Orakzai and there was no justification for keeping ban on the visit of followers to the shrine.