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Army Takes Over the Punjab and KP as Protests Are Likely to Spread to the North

Army Takes over the Punjab

According to the ministry, the army would assist the district government in reestablishing law, order, and peace.

Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, taking a cue from Punjab, has also called in the army as rioting claimed two lives and sent hundreds to hospitals in Peshawar. Political turmoil is simmering in the wake of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf chairman (PTI) Imran Khan’s spectacular arrest, and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa has called in the army as well.

Ten companies of soldiers have been authorized by the Ministry of Interior in response to the Punjab government’s request for help, with the statement that “the army would be working alongside district administration to restore law, order, and peace”.

“Pursuant to the request made by the Home Department Government of Punjab, vide their letter No. SO(IS-II)3-15/2023 (Security)(1) Dated 9 May 2023, the federal government in exercise of powers conferred under Article 245 of the Constitution and Section 4 (3) (ii) of the Anti-Terrorism Act 1997, (to discharge such functions as specified in the said act), is pleased to authorise the deployment of Pakistan Army troops,” according to the order issued by

The province administration will determine the precise number of personnel and assets, the deployment date, and the region in cooperation with the MO Dte, GHQ, it continued.

The announcement said that “the date of the de-requisition of said deployment will be determined subsequently after mutual consultation between both stakeholders.”

Following Imran Khan’s imprisonment on corruption accusations, police reportedly detained hundreds of his followers for violence, escalating the nation’s political turmoil.

Above 950 arrested for hooliganism in Punjab

Punjab police stated in a separate statement that individuals who attacked government buildings, police officers, and law enforcement organizations in the province had been dealt with.

In the statement, it was noted that “miscreants involved in violent acts, vandalism, damage to public and private property throughout the province have been arrested,” adding that during the violent operations, they had “seriously injured” more than 130 police officers and law enforcement officials.

“Police teams have arrested 950 lawbreakers and miscreants from across the province,” the statement continued.

“More than 25 vehicles of the police and government agencies were destroyed and burned,” the Punjab Police spokesman stated.

He said that protesters had stormed over 14 government buildings, looted, and seriously damaged government property.

Additionally, Punjab’s Inspector General (IG), Dr. Usman Anwar, stated that anyone who challenges the authority of the government or the law will face harsh legal consequences.

He underlined that anyone responsible for harming bystanders, law enforcement officials, and staff, as well as destroying property, “will be brought to justice”.

27 wounded, two killed in Peshawar

Two persons died as a consequence of violence in Peshawar, while 27 others were sent to several hospitals’ emergency rooms, including Lady Reading Hospital and Peshawar Teaching Hospital.

At least 30 persons were detained in Peshawar following the violent protests, the police reported, adding that complaints had been filed against the accused miscreants.

The incidents have been reported to the police on suspicion of causing damage to automobiles, metro buses, private property, and government ambulances.

Arson, stone-throwing, vandalism, and assaults on the police have also been included as provisions.

The police stated that they are now working to identify rioters and arsonists using CCTV video and other sources.

Punjab calling in the army is criticized by PTI

In response to the revelation, Shah Mehmood Qureshi, vice chairman of the PTI, criticised the federal government and questioned how the army became available for deployment in Punjab when it had previously been claimed that it was “too busy” to carry out election duties.

“We are quite concerned about the chairman Imran Khan’s life being threatened. The people that threatened our leader are in charge of him. Second, the army was extremely busy up until yesterday and was not accessible for the polls. What changed for the army to be deployed in Punjab and KP today? The country is not illiterate, Qureshi tweeted.

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