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Punjab IG dispels reports GB police prevented Imran Khan’s arrest

"We are all servants of the state," IGP Usman Anwar says

By Web Desk
March 16, 2023
Policemen gather near a street blocked with containers (not pictured) by authorities leading towards the residence of former prime minister Imran Khan, in Lahore on March 16, 2023. — AFP
Policemen gather near a street blocked with containers (not pictured) by authorities leading towards the residence of former prime minister Imran Khan, in Lahore on March 16, 2023. — AFP

LAHORE: Punjab Inspector General Dr Usman Anwar has denied reports that there was a standoff between police personnel of Punjab and Gilgit-Baltistan during the Zaman Park operation — which took place to arrest Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan.

Speaking to Geo News on Thursday, IGP Anwar said it should not be considered that the police personnel of one province fought with the force of another province.

"We are all servants of the state," he said, adding the security staff of the GB chief minister and another minister came outside during the police action but nothing happened as reported in the media.

The statement from the Punjab Police chief came after GB Inspector General of Police (IGP) Muhammad Saeed was transferred following Information Minister Marriyum Aurangzeb's claim that the PTI chairman used the "GB police force" against the Punjab Police.

It was reported that when the police reached Khan's residence in Zaman Park to arrest him, they came face-to-face with the GB police who trained guns at them after which the Punjab Police retreated.

GB CM Khursheed Alam, however, denied the claims.

When asked to comment on the matter, IGP Anwar clarified that neither this happened nor would one force fight with another.

"There's no civil war. All the police forces will ensure that the law of the land is implemented."

Responding to a question regarding the implementation of the Lahore High Court order, the top cop said a meeting is scheduled with the leaders of PTI at 5pm in which they will be briefed in detail about the situation.

The court has clearly directed us to ensure the rule of the law and they have to inform it tomorrow.

"We have been directed to ensure that there is no no-go area in the city," the police chief said, adding that "police's leniency should not be considered its weakness."