Arrests, clashes as PTI stages protests in several cities

RAWALPINDI   -  The Pakistan Tehreeke- Insaf (PTI) workers and supporters Saturday staged protest demonstrations against alleged vote rigging in the February 8 general elections, in several major cities amid clashes with the police.

In Lahore, PTI workers and lawyers stated protests in areas including Shahdara, GPO Chowk at Mall Road, and outside the commissioner’s office in Lahore. The Lahore Police arrested and batoncharged several PTI workers including Mian Shehzad Farooq. On the other hand, PTI’s Sher Afzal Marwat, who was leading a ral­ly from Peshawar to Islamabad, decided to change its route to­wards Rawalpindi.

Despite bad weather condi­tion, the PTI on Saturday staged a protest demonstration at Li­aquat Bagh against the alleged rigging in results of general elec­tions 2024 and demanded probe into the matter. They also sought strict action against those gov­ernment officers for facilitat­ing electoral fraud and assisting in robbing the mandate of the people. Holding playcards, ban­ners and portraits of former PM Imran Khan, who is in jail over corruption charges, the protes­tors of PTI also chanted slogans against the electoral rigging. Mess of PTI leaders and work­ers on Murree Road triggered traffic jam with City Traffic Po­lice wardens and officers busy in making efforts to regulate traffic flow. Also, the local police made tight security arrangements for protection of the participants of rally. According to details, the PTI Rawalpindi chapter has agi­tated against election rigging at Liaquat Bagh on Murree Road. PTI newly elected MNA Afzal Sher Marwat has joined the rally with a large number of support­ers. While other leaders of PTI including Sheryar Riaz, Seema­bia Tahir, Malik Zaheer Awan, Col (R) Ajmal Sabir and many oth­ers also present on the occasion and led the protestors. Speaking to the protestors, the leaders of PTI condemned the rigging in re­sults of general elections. They said the people of Pakistan vot­ed for PTI and Imran Khan but unseen hands robbed the man­date of people. They said that the people of Rawalpindi proved on Election Day and today that they are with Imran Khan, who was out in jail by the government on fake cases. They said that all the PTI leaders, workers and peo­ple should forge unity to obtain release of Imran Khan from Adi­ala Jail. They said that those in­volved in stealing election of PTI would be given an unforgettable lesson. Sher Afzal Marwat, the MNA, in his address, said that PTI is standing with Pakistan Army and people should curse Major (R) Adil Raja and Haid­er Mehdi who are spitting ven­om against army. “People should unfollow them on social media and not to put ears on their base­less talks and lies,” he said. Ear­lier, the district government and police have changed the route of rally of Sunni Ittehad Council according to which the partici­pants of rally proceeded towards Islamabad via IJP Road by pass­ing through Raja Bazaar, Chungi Number 4 and Pirwadhai. 

Sources disclosed that the dis­trict government changed route of SIC rally because of rally of Sher Afzal Marwat, the MNA and lead­er of PTI. Similarly, the leader and workers of PTI, led by Sher Afzal Marwat, Sheryar Riaz, Col (R) Ajmal Sabir and others, marched on Murree Road to join the main protest demo held in Islamabad.

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