Police (foreground) use tear gas to disperse Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf activists and supporters of former prime minister Imran Khan during a protest against the arrest of their leader, in Lahore on May 10, 2023. — AFP

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Police (foreground) use tear gas to disperse Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf activists and supporters of former prime minister Imran Khan during a protest against the arrest of their leader, in Lahore on May 10, 2023. — AFP
  • Naqvi says loss of over around Rs6bn incurred by acts of terrorism.
  • Says there was nefarious plan to burn PAF planes at Mianwali base.
  • Says more ATCs to be created if needed to punish miscreants.

LAHORE/RAWALPINDI: Over 3,500 individuals have been nabbed across Punjab during a crackdown on Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) workers, besides the identification of suspects behind attacks on General Headquarters and Lahore corps commander’s house, The News reported.

Punjab Caretaker Chief Minister Mohsin Naqvi said in a meeting with senior journalists on Sunday that Lahore and several other cities witnessed horrific terror acts during the PTI-led protests against the arrest of party chief Imran Khan

Estimates show that these incidents of terrorism caused a loss of over Rs6 billion and more loss was expected. Naqvi said that all the attacks, encirclement, looting and vandalism were done under regular planning.

He revealed that a large number of government and private buildings in Punjab were destroyed and burned while several vehicles including police vans, ambulances, fire trucks and private vehicles were destroyed.

Naqvi further stated that banks and ambulances were also set on fire apart from Jinnah House (Corps Commander House), meanwhile the arms carriers were destroyed in Mianwali.

He said that there was concrete evidence that there was a nefarious plan to burn the planes at PAF base Mianwali as well but it failed.

“Terrorism was done under the guise of politics, these cases of terrorism will be brought to a logical end. No innocent person will be caught and no one responsible for terrorism will escape,” he announced.

He vowed that every miscreant involved in these incidents of terrorism will be brought to justice, saying that a compromise on these cases will be tantamount to cruelty to Pakistan.

He then stated that the restoration work of Jinnah House was being done by the Ministry of Defence and it will soon be restored to its original condition.

He maintained that the government was focusing on arresting the “terrorists”. Many people had been caught and more will be apprehended, with no one to be spared, he added.

In the light of concrete evidence, he alleged that PTI leader Dr Yasmin Rashid was the main character in these incidents of violence

He said that these were the worst incidents in the history of Pakistan as the military buildings and installations that had ever been attacked in the past were targeted by outlaws and terrorist organisations.

He said that there were videos and pictures of every miscreant and ensured that no innocent person will be caught, while the errants will face a speedy trial. If necessary, the government will increase the number of anti-terrorism courts, he added.

The interim CM announced that in the future, in case of any attack on government properties and buildings, the police will use their powers according to the law.

He said political activity was converted into terrorism, which was very alarming and after this the government was also going to write to the Election Commission of Pakistan and a briefing will also be given so that the Commission can take a decision.

Moreover, Naqvi said that the Punjab government had announced a reward for identifying and reporting miscreants. Section 144 was in force in Punjab and there was a complete ban on gatherings and legal action will be taken on violation, he shared.

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