The city’s University Road and petrol pumps on

The city’s University Road and petrol pumps on it were opened to traffic and public, respectively, hours after workers of the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) and Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) had resorted to violence over a venue dispute for their May 12 rallies.

The two parties were at loggerheads after PTI and PPP announced to hold a public gathering at Hakeem Saeed Ground in Karachi’s Gulshan-e-Iqbal area.

Workers belonging to both parties engaged in aerial firing and pelting stones at one another late Monday evening.

Local police then evacuated the ground after workers of both parties resorted to violence.

Traffic on the University Road was affected following the clash. Two cars were set on fire in Gulshan-e-Iqbal.

Clashing workers of PTI and PPP also vandalised motorcycles and cars parked at the Hakeem Saeed Ground premises in Karachi’s Gulshan-e-Iqbal vicinity late Monday evening.

However, PPP leader Shehla Raza said her party had submitted a request for the venue on May 3. “We adopted a legal way to obtain the Hakeem Saeed Ground for our rally,” she said. “If PTI wanted the ground, it should have submitted its request to the authorities in advance.”

Amid an ongoing row over the venue, workers from both the parties had come face to face at Hakeem Saeed Ground earlier today.

PPP activists had chanted slogans in front of a minibus brought at the venue by the PTI. In response, party songs were played aloud from the PTI’s vehicle.

PTI member Ali Zaidi, meanwhile, had intervened to prevent a clash between supporters of the two parties.

“We were the first to announce a rally on May 12 and the PTI reserves the right to hold a public gathering at Hakeem Saeed Ground,” PTI Karachi chapter leader Firdous Naqvi said.

PPP’s Saeed Ghani responded to Naqvi by maintaining that his party had taken permission for holding the rally.

“PTI’s attitude is based on ignorance and bullying,” slammed Ghani.