KARACHI: The government decided to block all mobile phone services on Friday in 15 cities, including Karachi, Lahore, Murree, Multan, Peshawar, Khanewal and Chakwal to avoid any untoward incident as the nation observed Yaum-i-Ishq-i-Rasool (SAWW), DawnNews reported.
The decision had been made keeping in view the security risks associated with the various rallies expected to be taken out by religious and political parties.
The instruction to suspend mobile phone services was issued by the Pakistan Telecom Authority (PTA).
Services were expected to resume at 6:00 pm today.
In related news, all avenues leading to diplomatic consulates were sealed in major cities.
The red-zone area in Karachi and the areas surrounding the US consulate were sealed off.
Public transport, business houses, shopping plazas, educational institutions, banks, courts and other public and private offices remained closed across the country on Friday designated as the Yaum-i-Ishq-i-Rasool (‘Love for the Prophet’ day).
Political and religious organisations were expected to take out processions and hold demonstrations against the anti-Islam film “Innocence of Muslims” that has triggered protests across the Muslim world.
Earlier on Wednesday, the federal cabinet had decided to observe the day and declared it a public holiday.