Pakistan: Khadim Rizvi, many TLP activists arrested in countrywide crackdown

Pakistan: Khadim Rizvi, many TLP activists arrested in countrywide crackdown
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Srinagar: After getting approval from the government ahead of possible unrest in the Pakisatan’s federal capital on Sunday, Lahore police arrested Tehreek-e-Labbaik Pakistan (TLP) Chairman Khadim Rizvi from his residence on Friday night, The News International reported.

Firstly, he was shifted to Nawan Kot police station and then to some undisclosed location. During arrest, the TLP activists offered resistance and also manhandled senior police officers including SP Iqbal Town Syed Ali.

The Punjab police had got information that Khadim Rizvi was planning to lodge a strong protest demonstration in Islamabad on Sunday (tomorrow). Inspector General of Police Punjab Amjad Javed Saleemi directed Lahore Police chief to prepare lists of the TLP activists, who could create trouble. The police were alerted to avert any untoward situation.

Special teams were constituted to arrest the trouble-makers. Soon after sensing that the situation would get tense, the IGP ordered Lahore Police to arrest Khadim Rizvi and his staunch followers. At around 9:30pm, the police, led by SP Sadar division and SP Iqbal Town division, reached outside the house of Khadim Rizvi in Nawan Kot area near Chowk Yateem Khana. The TLP activists, armed with clubs, cordoned off the house of their leader. The activists later manhandled SP Iqbal Town Syed Ali.

Meanwhile, three vehicles of Pakistan Rangers also reached the scene. Police and the Rangers launched a commando action and arrested Khadim Rizvi from his Hujra. His son, Saad Rizvi, confirmed about his father’s arrest. Ambulances of Rescue-1122 and Edhi Foundation also reached the scene to deal with any kind of emergency.

On getting the news about Khadim Rizvi’s arrest, the charged TLP activists reached Multan Road and started a violent protest. Dozens of protestors gathered at Babu Sabu interchange and other entry points of the City and started blocking roads. They also pelted policemen with stones. A cop sustained serious injuries. Police also arrested one of the violent protesters. Police arrested a number of protestors and shifted them to different police stations. A number of cops also sustained injuries. They were given first aid, while the seriously injured were shifted to local hospitals. No case was registered against violent protesters till filing of the report.

Police also launched crackdown on Tehreek-e-Labbaik Pakistan (TLP) leaders and activists in various cities of Punjab on Friday night. Gujrat police registered a case against TLP central leader Pir Muhammad Afzal Qadri for levelling serious charges against institutions during the Eid Miladun Nabi procession on GT Road.

Various other TLP activists have been arrested in connection with the cases registered against them for violence and ransacking properties during party’s previous demonstrations. On the Punjab government’s orders, Punjab Rangers also reached in Lahore in aid of the Lahore police. Sources said more than 100 TLP leaders and activists were arrested in Lahore.

More than 15 activists TLP Rizvi and Jalali groups were arrested in Gujranwala and Kamoke.

In Karachi, dozens of TLP activists reached Numaish Chowrangi after receiving information about the arrest of party chief. Their protest caused a massive traffic jam on the Chowrangi and its surrounding areas.

Federal Information Minister Fawad Chaudhry said Friday in his tweet: “Khadim Hussain Rizvi has been taken into protective custody by police and shifted to a guest house. They insisted to come to Rawalpindi, refusing government’s proposal for alternative arrangements.

It’s to safeguard public life, property and order and (it) has nothing to do with Aasia Bibi case.” The minister added: “Govt did its best to convince them, but they refused every offer and started to provoke violence. Public is requested to stay peaceful… State is responsible to defend the finality and respect of Holy Prophet (PBUH). Law shall take its course and it cannot be left to individuals.”