Imran Khan arrest: Pakistan Police threatens tougher action against PTI supporters if violence continues
The Pakistan Police has warned of “tougher action” against supporters and party workers of Imran Khan’s Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chief if they do not abstain from violence and continue to bar the cops from arresting the former Prime Minister of the Country.
A report quoting Punjab province Inspector General of Police Usman Anwar said that the senior police officer has urged the protesters and supporters of Imran Khan to desist violent means or face strict action.
A report by Pakistan-based The News International quoted the IG as saying that vandalizing public property and torching police vehicles falls under the purview of terrorism act which would invite serious consequences for violent protesters who would be identified and nabbed with the help of security camera footage.
He said that violent protesters will be tried under the terrorism act.
The top cop’s remarks came after police failed to arrest Imran Khan as his supporters and PTI activists fought pitched battles against cops for the past two days, preventing the former PM’s arrest in the Toshakhana case.
On Tuesday, IGP Anwar said Islamabad police under the leadership of DIG Operations ICT Shahzad Bukhari reached Lahore to arrest the PTI chairman for compliance with the non-bailable arrest warrant issued against him by additional sessions judge Zafar Iqbal.
He said the Lahore police were told to accompany the Islamabad police team for compliance with the court orders and as the police reached Khan’s Zaman Park residence, they came under a barrage of stones from violent protesters which left dozens of cops, including DIG operations Islamabad, wounded.
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The officer further said that more personnel of the Punjab police were tasked to reach Zaman Park and help execute the court orders to arrest Imran, but allegedly came under attack from PTI workers armed with sticks and rocks, causing injuries to the policemen.
Yesterday, a court in Pakistan’s Lahore provided temporary relief to Imran Khan as it issued an order to the police to halt its bid to arrest the former Prime Minister till 10 am today morning.
The court’s order came after tensions prevailed outside Imran Khan’s Lahore residence as his supporters clashed with the Pakistani police, early Wednesday morning, leaving several protesters and some cops wounded.
According to reports, dressed in riot gear, the Pakistani police—who yesterday arrived at the Pakistan-Tehreek-E-Insaf (PTI) chief’s Lahore home to arrest him—fought pitched battles with the cricketer-turned politician’s supporters and his party workers leading to chaos in the Pakistani city.
Reports quoting eyewitnesses said the police baton charged Khan’s supporters and also fired tear gas cannisters, some of which landed inside the house, on the lawns of the former PM. The raucous crowd hurled stones at the cops leading to many of the policemen sustaining injuries.
Videos shared by Khan’s PTI party showed tear gas shells landing on the lawns of Khan’s house. They also alleged that the police resorted to live firing on the crowd.
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