ISLAMABAD- Chairman PTI, Imran Khan, today demanded the resignation of Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif in the wake of the death of 11 people, and the injuries to 83, in the police firing against PAT workers in Model Town.
The complicity of the Chief Minister in the Model Town action was evident from the hasty transfer of the Punjab IG just before the police action commenced. As Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif must take responsibility for these killings Khan pointed out that under his previous tenures also killings were part of routine police behavior in Punjab with the police becoming notorious for extra judicial killings including in “encounters”.
As a result of making the Punjab police effectively a militant wing of PMLN, the force has lost all credibility amongst the citizens of the Province. It is seen more as a force of terror than a protection against terror by the ordinary citizens.
Khan said instead of showing remorse and resigning, the Chief Minister aided by his brother the Prime Minister, have sought to go on a vengeful track through getting PEMRA to ban ARY for simply showing and exposing the worst kind of police atrocities that happened in Model Town against PAT workers. Khan felt this was yet another attempt by the Sharifs to silence their political opponents and was a reflection of the undemocratic mindset of the Sharifs.
Khan reiterated that to try and equate a factual coverage of Punjab police and PMLN goons’ brutality to the abuse of ISI for 8 hours straight by Geo with no evidence presented, is a massive abuse of state power was not only an absurdity but a travesty of justice. That ARY had led the critique against Geo and its owner has not gone unnoticed in the vengeful banning of the ARY channel when the government fully allowed the 8-hour uninterrupted targeting of ISI on Geo.
This vengeful undemocratic behaviour of the Sharifs must end and to this end PTI will continue its struggle to strengthen democracy by exposing this behaviour, including in electoral rigging, through its protests and jalsas. Khan concluded by saying that in any truly democratic and accountable system the Chief Minister would have resigned after what happened in Model Town Lahore. That Shahbaz Sharif has not done so and is instead pursuing a vengeful track is shameful indeed.