Despite sudden spike in Covid-19 cases in Pakistan especially in Peshawar district of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) and frequent warnings from the district administration, the Pakistan Democratic Movement’s (PDM) anti-government protest in Peshawar led to many questions.
The provincial government had tried to convince PDM to delay the public gathering due to rapid increase in coronavirus cases in the province, but the opposition parties terming it a tactic to stop them from holding the protest did not budge. PDM also refused to meet the body formed by Chief Minister Mehmood Khan for dialogue with the opposition for postponement of the public gathering.
The corona positive cases in Peshawar were already recorded at 13 per cent now there is a fear of further increase after PDM huge public gathering.
The public is asking whether PDM would be taking responsibility if Covid19 cases in KP hiked in upcoming weeks.
Meanwhile health experts believe that the second wave of Covid19 is dangerous than the first one.
Many are of the view that those who had gathered thousands of people from across the province must be held accountable for any possible spike in cases as thousands of people had travelled from many districts towards Peshawar for PDM jalsa a perfect recipe for spread of the virus.
Talking to Voice of KP, Dr. Shabeer from Peshawar said that there was no doubt that the second wave of the Covid19 was much dangerous than the first one; saying that both the government and opposition were not serious about the pandemic because both sides were holding public rallies.
Apart from health concerns the claims and counter claims about the strength of the PDM power show is also a talk of the town where PDM said it was historical while the sitting government is calling it a failed show.
While talking to the Voice of KP, a Peshawar based senior journalist, Shahid Ali who was present at the jalsa said that all the claims of the opposition parties proved wrong as they failed to gather the number of people they were claiming about.
He said that there were almost ten thousand people in jalsa which was jointly held by almost 11 opposition parties which was not a good omen for the opposition alliance in future and it seems that people were not interested in the PDM.
Tauseef Ali another journalist said that they were expecting a very huge gathering of people to give tough time to the government but things were completely opposite as the opposition failed to attract a reasonable number of people.
Tauseef Ali maintained that almost 80 percent of people were from Jamiat Ulema e Islam (JUI) and the second in the list was Awami National Party (ANP) while the rest of the parties pulled a poor show which is a big question mark over the future of PDM.
He further said that PDM leadership had also failed to convince its workers to adopt SOPs which was the reason that people avoided attending the jalsa as even the leadership on stage did not bother to wear masks.
The JUI’s senior leader Abdul Jalil Jan told Voice of KP that they had attracted over 1 lakh people despite blockade of roads by the KP government adding that they were not supposed to postpone their anti-government rallies as the government was using Covid19 as a tactic to stop opposition from protests.
ANP’s senior leader Sammar Haroon Bilour said that there was no fear of coronavirus in that time when Imran Khan was holding Jalsa in Swat why question PDM Now. She despite barriers were placed on roads, thousands of workers participated in jalsa.
The PDM held its public rally despite government’s ban on mass gatherings leaving many unanswered questions like who will be responsible for deaths if corona got out of hands in Peshawar!