Heavy Security Presence in Punjab, Pakistan to Preempt Potential Protests by Khan's Party

Police deployed heavily in Lahore to prevent PTI protests on the anniversary of May 9 violence. The party alleges the attacks were planned by opponents, claiming peaceful protests will be held. PTI leaders criticize the police crackdown and allege false flag operations. Authorities deny permission for rallies due to PTI's involvement in prior military installations attacks.

PTI | Lahore | Updated: 09-05-2024 17:49 IST | Created: 09-05-2024 17:49 IST
Heavy Security Presence in Punjab, Pakistan to Preempt Potential Protests by Khan's Party
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  • Pakistan

A heavy contingent of police was deployed outside the residence of jailed former prime minister Imran Khan and the offices of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf here in Punjab province of Pakistan on Thursday to prevent any protest by the party on the first anniversary of the May 9 violence.

The mayhem on May 9 last year was led by supporters of Khan's PTI party who were triggered into action by the arrest of their leader in a case of alleged corruption.

The 71-year-old leader's party workers vandalised a dozen military installations, including the Jinnah House (Lahore Corps Commander House), Mianwali Airbase and the ISI building in Faisalabad after the cricketer-turned-politician was arrested in a corruption case.

The Army headquarters (GHQ) in Rawalpindi was also attacked by the mob for the first time.

PTI leadership, alleging that May 9 was planned by its opponents, has announced "peaceful protests" on the first anniversary.

''For Islamabad, Punjab and elsewhere, we will announce shortly as there's been a massive crackdown on workers and leaders last night. We are anticipating more later today (Thursday),'' a PTI spokesperson said on X.

Neither the Punjab police nor the PTI provided the number of arrests during the crackdown.

The PTI spokesperson said although rallies have been planned in all constituencies across Punjab, including Lahore. However, the police were deployed to thwart them.

As the PTI plans to hold a rally on Canal Road from the Zaman Park residence of Imran Khan, a heavy contingent of police has been deployed there.

A Punjab police officer told Press Trust of India that Khan's party would not be allowed to hold any rally in the province on May 9.

He said the party could not be allowed to hold rallies as it was involved in attacks on military installations during last year's May 9 protests.

Khan's close aide Zulfi Bokhari on X said what happened against the people of Pakistan that day (May 9) had made it a truly Dark Day... but for the right reasons only.

''First the nation's most loved and cleanest politician Imran Khan was manhandled and illegally abducted -- embarrassing Pakistan globally. A few outraged and unguided souls were led by unidentifiable men, regrettably attacking government/army unmanned properties -- going against Imran Khan's orders of non-violence. In return the whole country was punished -- Pakistanis were shot dead and thousands of innocents abducted. Many were illegally arrested and are still languishing in prisons. To date no evidence has been shown against those who were arrested,'' Bokhari said.

The PTI has already declared attacks on military installations a ''false flag operation'' that was pre-planned and aimed at crushing and dismantling the cricketer-turned-politician's party.

(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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