PTI workers pelt stones outside Islamabad court complex ahead of Imran’s hearing

Islamabad, March 18 (IANS) As PTI chairman Imran Khan and his motorcade on Saturday reached outside the Islamabad Judicial Complex where he was to be indicted in the Toshakhana case, the police alleged that party workers began pelting stones at them, the media reported.

A large number of party workers, who were accompanying the former prime minister, were attempting to escort him to court premises but due to security arrangements, they were not allowed to do so, Dawn reported.

The PTI leader is scheduled to appear before the court of Additional District and Sessions Judge (ADSJ) Zafar Iqbal to attend proceedings on a complaint filed by the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) for allegedly concealing details of gifts in his assets declarations.

Imran, who left his Lahore home a little after 8 a.m. and had warned in a video message that he was expecting an attempt to arrest him, had yet to reach the court, though the Islamabad Police tweeted that Imran’s convoy was right in front of the Judicial Complex.

“Political workers are requested to clear the way so that Imran Khan can reach the court,” the police said on Twitter, Dawn reported.

It also claimed that political activists had “started pelting stones at the police” and “shelling” was also being carried out by them. A police picket was also allegedly set on fire, Dawn reported.

The Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (Pemra) has restricted live coverage of events outside the Islamabad Judicial Complex, where Imran Khan will be arriving for a court hearing.

According to a statement, Pemra referred to the clashes between PTI workers and law enforcement personnel outside Khan’s Zaman Park residence, saying it had “observed with concern” that satellite TV channels were “showing live footages (sic) / images of a violent mob, attacks on police and law enforcing agencies”.

The ban comes after pitched battles between PTI supporters and law enforcement personnel spanning two days as the latter tried to execute a court-ordered arrest warrant, Dawn reported.

It said the footage or images were seen on TV “without any editorial oversight during the recent standoff between political party workers and law enforcement agencies in Lahore wherein, the violent mob used petrol bombs, injuring armless policemen and blazing police vehicles”.

It added that the live telecast of such footage on different satellite TV channels “created chaos and panic” among viewers and the police.

“Such activism by mob not only jeopardises law and order situation but also makes public properties and lives vulnerable,” it cautioned, Dawn reported. – IANS

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