The Jamiat Ulema-i-Islam's (JUI-F) 13-day 'Azadi March' in Islamabad has cost the Pakistan government over $1.5 million, according to police officials. The officials told Dawn news on Sunday that the amount was payable to contractors/vendors whose services were hired for security arrangements during the sit-in.
The JUI-F staged the rally and sit-in in the capital from October 31 to November 13. In this regard, arrangements were made for lodging, meal and transportation of police called from other districts. An amount of $1.6 million was spent on the 18 days sit-in, the officials stated. Before the sit-in, the capital police sought $1.7 million for a fortnight but later had to cut it to $839,298 on the directive of the government.
As many as 5,000 from the capital police along with 3,000 Frontier Constabulary, 1,500 Punjab Constabulary, 2,000 from Khyber Pakhtunkhwa police and railway police performed duties in the capital during the sit-in, the officials told Dawn. 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.
There were also some other expenses, including rent of nine buildings hired for the force requisitioned from other provinces. In 2014, some $4.4 million was spent during the sit-in of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf and Pakistan Awami Tehreek.