QUETTA: On Friday, cellular services and mobile networks remained suspended in Gwadar for the fifth day in a row as the city’s commercial districts and stores remained closed at the request of a group that has been organising sit-ins and protests there for more than a month against “illegal fishing through trawlers” and “unnecessary check posts.”

The Gwadar Rights Movement (GRM), led by Maulana Hidayatur Rehman, has also called for normalising commerce with Iran’s neighbour.

The deputy commissioner for Gwadar said that everything were back to normal in the city.

He continued by saying that individuals had begun reopening their businesses, including stores.

In a document released by the government on Friday night, the deputy commissioner said that “people rejected the miscreants and elements disturbing the customary tranquillity of Gwadar.”

No communication could be made with the GRM leader despite many tries.

In Gwadar, police also detained a journalist named Obaidullah and his three sons.

According to sources, the police eventually freed the three boys, but the journalist remained in detention up until the time this article was filed.

Security was stepped up in and around Gwadar, and police officers armed with batons were sent out to keep the peace.

However, due to the additional security on Friday, no undesirable incidence was recorded.

Waseem Safar and Sibghatullah, two GRM activists, were freed by a court in Turbat, the administrative centre of the Kech district in the Makran division of Balochistan.

They were detained by the police on suspicion of instigating violence in the neighbourhood.

A day earlier, Balochistan Home Minister Mir Ziallah Langove accused the GRM leader of encouraging violence against the government and administration while speaking at a new gathering.

Mitha Khan Kakar, the Parliamentary Secretary for Information, Abdul Khaliq Sheikh, the Inspector General of Police, and other senior officials were with him.

According to Langove, “the [provincial] government [has already] approved 42 requests of the GRM.”

The provincial administration, he said, was dedicated to resolving the problems Gwadar locals were experiencing.

He also said that the administration had prevented the police from using force against the demonstrators.

In order to preserve peace and order, the Balochistan government has banned pillion riding and the public exhibition of guns in Gwadar under Section 144.

The provincial administration is allegedly robbing the fishing community of their daily bread by permitting illegal fishing and trawling in the Arabian Sea, according to GRM head Hidayatur Rehman.

These assertions, however, have always been refuted by the provincial administration.

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