350 PAT activists booked

ISLAMABAD: The capital police filed first information report (FIR) against 350 workers of the Pakistan Awami Tehreek (PAT) on Tuesday on the charges of scuffling with the law enforcement agencies on their way to the Benazir Bhutto International Airport (BBIA) on Monday ahead of Tahirul Qadri’s arrival.According to reports, the FIRs have been registered at the police stations in Sabzi Mandi, Sector I9, Shehzad Town, Koral, Lohi Bhir, and Tarnol. The alleged culprits are to be apprehended for neglecting the imposition of Section 144 in the twin cities. The accused, according to sources, have been booked for injuring police officials, destroying of public properties and interfering in the matters of the government. The workers of the PAT marched from D-Chowk and from other points within the twin cities towards the airport to welcome Qadri. They were intercepted by a blockade of law enforcement agencies. Refusing to cooperate, the workers of the PAT clashed with the police, injuring at least 47 police personnel.Meanwhile, as many as 3,000 workers of the PAT have been booked on charges of terrorism, damaging public property, torturing policemen, attacking police stations, and creating law and order situation during Monday’s protest in the city. Rawalpindi City Police Officer (CPO Hamyoun Bashir Tarar informed the media on Tuesday that a FIR in this regard was registered at the Airport Police Station. Some 53 accused workers had been arrested while raids to arrest the other workers of the PAT are being conducted, he added. Punjab Inspector General of Police (IGP) Mushtaq Shukhera said on Tuesday that only 53 workers of the PAT were in police custody on a 10-day physical remand. The PAT supporters and workers, he said, indulged in violent activities during the protest on Monday and tortured the police personnel.“Holding protest in a peaceful manner is a right of every citizen, but no one would be allowed to take law into his own hands,” he said while talking to the media personnel after inquiring about the health of the injured policemen at District Headquarters (DHQ) Hospital. The IGP said that action in accordance with the law would be taken against the violators. He said that a case had been registered at the Airport Police Station against the PAT workers on charges of terrorism, damaging public property, torturing policemen, attacking police station, and creating law and order situation during protest. The IGP said that the police showed tolerance and did not react when they were tortured by the PAT workers. To a question, he said that the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) was looking into the matter of an international airliner and if an application was given to the police against PAT chief Tahirul Qadri, then a case would be registered against him. To a query, he said that a judicial probe is underway for the Lahore incident and those found guilty would be punished according to the law.

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