Islamabad police on the lookout for PTI protesters who blocked G.T. Road on Nov 10 – Pakistan

RAWALPINDI: The local police have reportedly been preparing to round up Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) workers and activists who were part of a long march on Nov 10, 2022.

Mandra police on Wednesday registered a first information report (FIR) against 183 PTI supporters, of whom 13 were nominated while the remaining 170 were unidentified on charges of forcibly blocking G.T. Road on both sides with heavy vehicles parked in the middle.

Today’s FIR was registered on the complaint of Yasir Mehmood (foot constable) after about 76 days since the incident had happened. Another FIR related to the incident was registered on Nov 10, 2022 by Jawad Anwar, another foot constable.

According to sources, police have been planning to round up all those supporters of PTI who were involved in blocking Motorway MI toll plaza causing long queues of vehicles on either side of the road on Nov 10, 2022.

13 people nominated whereas 170 yet to be identified

The local police reportedly conducted raids to apprehend PTI supporters after receiving a list of the party’s followers, despite the fact that none of them had been named in the prior FIR registered with Naseerabad police in November.

On Nov 10, 2022, Mr Anwar, a detective foot constable, lodged an FIR with police saying that he and a head constable were travelling to Chowki Hameeda. When they arrived at MI toll plaza, they found the road blocked by around 60 protesters.

He said the motorway had been blocked completely on both sides by protesters and also observed that long queues of vehicles could be seen which caused inconvenience to commuters.

“I, along with my fellows, made attempts to clear the motorway but could not do so due to large number of protesters,” the foot constable said.

Due to trouble in movement, many travellers had to either postpone or cancel their travelling plans due to the PTI’s long march which reached Jhelum en-route Rawalpindi.

In the FIR, which was registered on Wednesday, the complainant said he had been posted at Mandra police station as detective foot constable and was on duty at the bus stand when he received information that some PTI workers had blocked G.T. Road by parking vehicles in the middle.

He further said after he reached the spot at about 3:30pm, he found protesters, 13 of whom were identified along with 170 others who are yet to be identified, blocking the road.

He said that the blockade of the road continued till late at night as protesters chanted slogans.

The FIR was registered against the protesters on charges of wrongfully restraining people and blocking the road.

On the other hand, the police department’s security branch has identified hot spots of the garrison city where PTI workers and supporters are expected to stage protests against arrest of the party’s leaders.

In view of the expected protests, police have been directed to remain alert and immediately inform provincial authorities when it happens.

Published in Dawn, January 26th, 2023

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