Cellular service in selected areas of the twin cities remained suspended from 5am until 12pm during the Pakistan Day parade scheduled for March 25, a spokesperson said. The suspension is part of a “security measure” for the parade. Commercial flights will also remain suspended for the day due to the fly-past of Pakistan Air Force (PAF) fighter jets, the spokesperson said.
The parade was rescheduled from March 23, when it regularly occurs every year, due to poor weather conditions, after which the parade was postponed to Thursday. A holiday has already been announced on the day of the parade for all government and private institutions in Islamabad.
Some users expressed concern about the parade interfering with COVID-19 vaccination appointments, since most roads would be blocked and cellular signals would be inconsistent. Some people may not be able to arrive for their vaccinations due to the parade.
The parade, which is being held in Islamabad, is supposed to be in compliance with all anti-COVID-19 Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs). Over 1,000 police personnel have been stationed in Islamabad and Rawalpindi to control traffic and maintain order.
Other security measures include the banning of kite-flying, aerial firing, and releasing pigeons into the air in the areas around the parade ground. Residents have also been barred from coming out on the roofs of their houses, apartments or building complexes.
Furthermore, teams of army and police have been deployed at Faizabad interchange and nearby areas of the parade ground.