Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif had ordered the lifting of self-imposed moratorium on the death penalty in terror-related cases, a day after Taliban massacred 148 people, including 132
students in Peshawar.
    
"The winter vacation were due from December 24 to December 31 but on the reports of the intelligence agencies that terrorists can target schools and other educational institutions in reaction to hanging their death row fellows, the government has decided to call early winter holidays from December 19 to January 9," an official of Punjab home department told PTI.
    
"There have been inadequate security measures in thousands of schools of the province. Therefore, we cannot take chances to let them open at the time when there is an
alarming terror threat," he said.
    
Punjab government spokesperson Zaeem Husain Qadri said the schools would remain closed up to January 3 while colleges and universities till January 9 in Punjab.
    
"During the vacation the Punjab government's committees will conduct surveys to ascertain security arrangements in all public and private schools. Trained guards equipped with arms
will be deployed in every school," Qadri said.
    
Some 5,815 death row prisoners are languishing in Punjab jails. Of them, some 100 are terrorists.

They are activists of banned militant organisations who were awarded death sentence under murder and terrorism charges by anti-terrorism courts.
    
They had filed mercy petitions in the office of the President of Pakistan after the Supreme Court rejected their appeals.

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