Islamabad Capital Territory Police on Monday announced they had thus far arrested 198 persons over their alleged involvement in vandalism, attacks on police and damage to government property during Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan’s appearance at the Judicial Complex on March 18.
In a statement, the capital police said raids were being conducted to ensure the arrest of all the people involved in violence over the weekend. It also rubbished claims by the PTI of a 10-year-old child being arrested during the raids, stressing that a “systematic propaganda campaign” was being conducted on social media against law enforcement agencies.
Clarifying that the process of identifying the accused involved in the weekend’s clashes was underway with the aid of CCTV footage, the statement said that police had registered cases at the Counter-Terrorism Department and Golra Police Stations over clashes that had led to 58 policemen being injured. In addition, it said, four police vehicles and 25 motorcyles were set ablaze, while nine other vehicles were vandalized. All miscreants involved in the violent acts would be brought to justice, it added.
Stressing that police were performing their duties within the ambit of law, the statement vowed that “hateful propaganda” being spread to discourage police from their legal duties would not succeed. “The law is equal for all and there would be no discrimination against anyone,” read the statement, which advised parents to keep young children away from crowds to avoid any untoward incident.
In a statement, the PTI urged the families of workers who had been arrested to contact its legal staff, claiming it would provide them support to get the cases against them quashed.