Protests broke in several cities across Pakistan on Tuesday after a video by former premier Imran Khan asked his supporters to “come out” for real freedom and continue the struggle even if he is killed or arrested.
Soon after his speech, protests broke out in Islamabad, Peshawar, Karachi, Faisalabad, Sargodha, Vehari, Peshawar, Quetta, and Mianwali, according to news agency PTI.
Protesters blocked several roads in different cities of Punjab. In Lahore, Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) workers blocked several roads to protest the police action. PTI workers have staged a sit-in there and demanded the end of police action against Khan.
In Peshawar, a large number of PTI supporters demonstrated outside the press club. After holding the demonstration, PTI workers blocked Sher Shah Suri road and started marching towards the Governor House.
Islamabad police said PTI protesters had blocked Tarnol Road but timely action had been taken to reopen it for traffic.
In Chowrangi, Karachi, people staged a protest by setting tires on fire against what was going on at Zaman Park.
My Arrest Is A Part Of ‘London Plan’: Imran Khan
Meanwhile, in a video message, Imran Khan accused the federal government of planning his arrest saying that his arrest is a part of the “London Plan” to finish all cases against the country’s former premier Nawaz Sharif.
In a video message, Imran said, “This is part of the London plan and an agreement has been signed there to put Imran in jail, make the PTI fall and finish all cases against Nawaz Sharif.”
He remarked he didn’t understand the reason behind the attack when he had already assured that he would appear before the court on March 18. These comments come as tensions prevailed in the early hours of Wednesday, in Lahore.
اپنی قوم کے لئے میرا پیغام!pic.twitter.com/Dv3i9X0S1J
— Imran Khan (@ImranKhanPTI) March 14, 2023
More contingents were called to Imran Khan’s Zaman Park residence where a stand-off between law enforcement and PTI supporters continues has been going on for more than 14 hours.
Supporters of former Pakistan premier Imran Khan on Tuesday clashed with the police outside his residence here to foil his arrest on corruption charges, wounding several policemen and workers of his party. Despite an over eight-hour-long police operation outside the Zaman Park Lahore residence of Imran Khan the police could not arrest him due to strong resistance from PTI workers.
Police fired tear gas and used water cannons to disperse Khan’s supporters, who reportedly hurled stones at policemen, resulting in injuries.
Khan said that to prevent any chaos, he had given an undertaking to the Lahore High Court Bar Association’s president, who then attempted to forward it to the Deputy Inspector General who was coming to arrest the PTI chief but the latter did not meet the president, ANI reported.
“According to Code of Criminal Procedure Section 76, if this surety bond is given to the arresting officer, then I cannot be arrested,” Imran said.
Khan said that the DIG had no reason to accept the undertaking and that this pointed to the ill-intentions.
Two non-bailable arrest warrants against Imran Khan were issued on Monday, in a case pertaining to using threatening language against a woman additional district and sessions judge and senior police officers aside from the Toshakhana case. The PTI chief has skipped hearings in several hearings and he has thrice skipped indictment hearings in the Toshakhana case.
Khan has been accused of buying gifts, including an expensive Graff wristwatch he had received as the premier at a discounted price from the state depository called Toshakhana and selling them for profit.
On March 7, the IHC suspended Imran’s non-bailable arrest warrants till March 13 and instructed him to appear before the sessions court.
Imran’s counsel Khawaja Haris, on Tuesday, informed the court that his client would not be able to appear. “He is not refusing to appear, but due to security threats he cannot be present,” Imran’s lawyer said.
On Monday, the Lahore police booked Khan in a case related to the killing of the PTI worker – Ali Bilal alias Zille Shah – in a road accident.
Earlier, the Lahore police had registered an FIR against Khan and 400 others for the murder of Shah.