PML-N workers, police clash as NAB cancels Maryam interview

Over 50 activists arrested as police use teargas, lathi-charge to disperse crowd

By: News Desk      Published: 12:42 PM, 11 Aug, 2020
PML-N workers, police clash as NAB cancels Maryam interview

Over 50 PML-N supporters were arrested as they clashed with police outside the NAB office located near Thokar Niaz Baig in Lahore on Tuesday, resulting in injuries to several of them, after they were stopped from moving forward along with PML-N Vice-President Maryam Nawaz.

As the clash erupted, the angry protesters tried to remove the barricades erected in the area and pelted the police with stones while the cops used teargas and baton charge to disperse them. The situation worsened in the area despite the fact that PML-N Vice-President Maryam left the NAB office without registering her appearance before the investigators.

نیب آفس کے باہر حالات کشیدہ، لیگی کارکنوں کی جانب سے پولیس پر پتھراو، پولیس کی آنسو گیس کی شیلنگ

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However, the NAB officials later announced that they had cancelled the planned interview with Maryam Nawaz in connection with the Jati Umra land inquiry after the law and order situation outside their office went out of control.

Sources in the NAB said that Maryam Nawaz had been informed about the cancellation of the interview. They were of the view that she may be summoned to the NAB office again and accused the PML-N of planning violence.

پولیس کی شیلنگ اور پتھراؤ سے میری گاڑی کے شیشے ٹوٹ گئے، اتنا ہی ڈرتے ہو تو بلاتے کیوں ہو ؟؟ مریم نواز

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But Maryam later said in a series of tweets that the police had actually resorted to using force initially. “Police attacking my car. Imagine if it were not a bullet proof vehicle. Shame,” she said and condemned the use of teargas and baton charge as well as pelting stones at her supporters.  

She also shared another video in which the party supporter are seen showering rose petals on her vehicle. 

Meanwhile, the indiscriminate teargassing, stone pelting and baton charge also affected the ordinary citizens and daily wagers in the area.

But in a surprising move, Maryam returned outside the NAB office after some time and demanded that she wanted to present her reply to the baseless allegations. “I am standing right here. I won’t leave today without sharing my answer,” she told media persons and reporters.

“Why do you summon the people when you do not have the courage to hear the answer? Why are you so afraid of Nawaz Sharif and Maryam,” she questioned and said she summoned at the NAB office to hurt her. “Open the doors. Listen to my answer.”

However, Maryam left for her residence when the NAB officials didn’t allow her to enter and present herself for the interview even after negotiations between the PML-N leaders and senior anti-graft body members.

They were formally informed that the planned interview wasn’t possible in the current situation and she would be informed about the next date later. 

Meanwhile, the NAB in a statement accused Maryam of planning violence and bringing miscreants with her and said they would get a case registered against those involved in the violence. The Bureau said Maryam would have to come to its office without protocol next time she was called in by the NAB.

مریم نواز نیب میں پیشی کے بغیر ہی واپس روانہ

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Also, Punjab Chief Minister Usman Buzdar took notice of the situation and sought a report from the provincial police chief and chief secretary, ordering the officials to take action against the persons taking law into their hands.

Earlier, Maryam reached the NAB office along with a large number of party supporters who were chanting slogans against the government. 

مریم نواز اور لیگی کارکنوں پر طاقت کا استعمال، آنسو گیس کی شیلنگ اور پتھراؤ غیر ضروری ہے، بلاول بھٹو

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During an informal chat with party workers and supporters before leaving her Jati Umra residence, Maryam said she wasn’t afraid of anything. Her father and she were upholding to their stance no matter what kind of tactics the government might use, said the PML-N vice-president.

Maryam described the land case as unfounded and said she was arrested in the past too – one ago year from the Kot Lakhpat jail in front of her father. 

Fabricating a bogus case had neither produced anything in the past nor would in the future, she remarked.

On the other hand, Maryam also visited her mother’s grave and prayed there before leaving for the NAB office.

Meanwhile, the PML-N reacted strongly to blocking the roads and not allowing the party workers to gather in support of Maryam.

حکومت مخالفین سے سیاسی انتقام لے رہی ہے، نااہل اور نالائق حکومت سے جان چھڑائی جائے گی، راناثناءاللہ کی میڈیا سے گفتگو

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In this connection, Rana Sanaullah – the party’s Punjab chapter president – said Maryam was summoned in a bogus and baseless case. “The administration has shut down the entire motorway and Ring Road. This government has nothing to do except victimisation [of opponents],” he told reporters.

“The NAB office has been encircled like a castle. The police have blocked every crossing for traffic,” Rana Sana, who was the only top party leader present outside the NAB office, said and added that Prime Minister Imran Khan had pushed the country to the brink of destruction.

About the summing Buzdar, he listed the move as a drama and said the NAB was just a puppet organisation, adding that its chairman had his hands tied.

Similarly, PML-N MPA Hina Pervaiz Butt in a tweet said the government was afraid of Maryam, making it to shut the entire city to stop the party workers to assemble.