LAHORE – Intervening as police and other security personnel clashed with PTI workers outside party chief and former Prime Minister Imran Khan’s residence, the Lahore High Court on Wednesday ordered a stop to police operation at Zaman Park till 10 a.m. on Thursday, reports said.
The order was passed by a bench of Justice Tariq Saleem Sheikh, while hearing a petition filed by PTI leader Fawad Chaudhry seeking to stop the “atrocities” outside Zaman Park, passed these orders, Dawn reported.
Earlier, the court had instructed the Punjab’s Inspector General of Police, Chief Secretary and chief of operations of Islamabad police (operations) head to appear in court.
On Wednesday morning, Islamabad Police, backed by Punjab Police and Rangers resumed efforts – which began on Tuesday – to arrest the ex-premier in connection with the Toshkhana case. Imran Khan has skipped apprearance several times, which led to the judge issuing non-bailable arrest warrants for him.
However, they were met with strong resistance from PTI workers, who pelted stones at them. The police responded with volleys of tear gas.
After hours of skirmishes, the personnel pulled back to Mall Road, from where they cleared out, as per a Dawn.coms correspondent at the scene.
Earlier, the PTI in a tweet said that more workers were reaching Zaman Park and vowed not to let the “impure intentions” of the coalition government succeed.
Separately, a video posted on PTI’s official Twitter showed Imran Khan, donning a gas mask, addressing party supporters outside his residence.
The PTI alleged on Wednesday that the party chief’s residence was “under extreme attack” as it posted footage of armed law enforcement personnel opening fire, Dawn reported.
In a tweet, the party shared a video alleging “open firing by Rangers and Police”, without specifying when the video was filmed.
Television footage showed police shelling the protesters, baton charging and firing tear gas at them.
Earlier, in an address to the nation via video link, Imran Khan said that the “hope lies with the courts and establishment” in ending this “farce”.
“It will (soon) be out of our hands… the kinds of actions that are taking place… the boys (workers) outside are not listening to me. When this anarchy and shelling is taking place against them, they won’t listen to me anymore. I have no control over them now,” he said. -IANS