Lahore (Web Desk): Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) workers and police clashed on Tuesday in Lahore's Zaman Park area after a contingent of the Islamabad police, along with armoured vehicles, reached in the city to arrest former premier Imran Khan after an Islamabad court on Monday issued non-bailable arrest warrants for him in Toshakhana case.
DIG Operations Islamabad Shahzad Bukhari is leading the police party that has surrounded Imran Khan’s residence.
A per the reports, PTI supporters pelted stones at police officials as they began baton-charging the crowds, turning Zaman Park into a battleground.
Police allegedly used water canons to hold back PTI workers, with some being taken into custody.
A heavy contingent of Lahore Police accompanying the capital police is also outside Imran Khan's house, and the police have blocked all the roads leading to Zaman Park.
Later in a video message on Twitter, the PTI chief called on his supporters to “come out” and fight for Haqeegi Azadi ( real freedom) and rule of law.
Khan said that police had arrived to arrest him.
“They think that after I am arrested, the nation will fall asleep. You have to prove them wrong,” the former premier said.
“If something happens to me and I am sent to jail or if I am killed, you have to prove that you will struggle without Imran Khan and not accept the slavery of these thieves and of the one person who has been making decisions for the country,” he said.
My message to the nation to stand resolute and fight for Haqeeqi Azadi & rule of law. pic.twitter.com/bgVuOjsmHG— Imran Khan (@ImranKhanPTI) March 14, 2023
Meanwhile, protests broke out in major cities at the call of Imran Khan as police and PTI supporters continued to clash outside his Zaman Park residence in Lahore.
Last week, the IHC suspended the non-bailable arrest warrant for Khan issued by the local court issued due to the PTI chief's continuous absence.
IHC Chief Justice Aamer Farooq accepted the PTI chief's plea against Additional Sessions Judge Zafar Iqbal's decision and directed Khan to ensure that he appears before the lower court on March 13.
However, during Monday's hearing, Khan filed an exemption plea citing security threats and failed to appear before the court once again. Rejecting Khan's exemption plea, the court issued orders to arrest the PTI chief and present him before the court on March 18.
Earlier today, a district and sessions court suspended Imran Khan's arrest warrants issued against him in a case in connection with his remarks regarding threats to female judge till March 16.
On Monday, the district and sessions court issued a non-bailable arrest warrant for the PTI chief for skipping the court appearance in a case regarding threats to Additional District and Sessions Judge Zeba Chaudhry at an August 20 public rally in the federal capital.
Civil Judge Rana Mujahid Rahim announced the reserved verdict while issuing notices to the parties for arguments in the acquittal petition.
Dismissing Khan's petition seeking exemption from hearing the case in person, the court ordered the police to produce the PTI chief before it by March 29.
The judge also said that the court will hear arguments on Imran’s petition seeking to be dismissed from the case in the next proceedings.
However, the former prime minister filed a petition in the court challenging the arrest warrant.
The court issued a notice to the parties after the arguments by the PTI lawyers and adjourned the hearing till March 16.