The PTI has shifted the venue of its August 13 “Haqeeqi Azadi jalsa” from Islamabad’s Parade Ground to the Lahore Hockey Ground, party’s focal person Azhar Mashwani said on Monday.

“The decision was taken by chairman Imran Khan in a meeting today,” he said in a statement, elaborating that the development comes after the party learnt about the federal government’s “insufficient” plans for celebrations on Independence Day.

“[The] proud Pakistanis of Lahore will celebrate the 75th Independence Day in a grand manner at Hockey Stadium Lahore,” he said.

Mashwani added that the ex-premier will attend the rally and address supporters as well.

Separately, in a press conference at Bani Gala earlier in the day, PTI leader Omar Ayub said that party workers had visited the Pindi Cricket Stadium and Liaqat National Bagh.

“We were told that the stadium just got new pitches while plantation was underway in the park.”

He went on that the PTI had been given permission for the rally at Islamabad’s Parade Ground. “But at the last moment we found out that the Tehreek-e-Labbaik Pakistan wanted to hold a protest there and it could have created problems.

“Hence, we came to the conclusion that Lahore is the best location [for the rally],” he said, adding that ground was spacious and could fit all of Imran’s supporters.

On Sunday, the PTI chief had said that he would announce a strategy to “counter this fascism” during the August 13 rally.

Meanwhile, at a press conference earlier in the day, Interior Minister Rana Sanaullah warned the PTI of “worst repercussions” if its upcoming protest turned violent.

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