PTI crumbles under pressure, changes Sialkot rally venue

Usman Dar, workers arrested as police storm Sialkot rally venue: They were released hours later: Imran Khan calls meeting to discuss Sialkot situation

By: News Desk
Published: 10:17 AM, 14 May, 2022
PTI crumbles under pressure, changes Sialkot rally venue
Caption: TV grab.
Stay tunned with 24 News HD Android App
Get it on Google Play

Following crackdown by Sialkot police and protest by members of the Christian community against the PTI’s rally on the church land, the party has now decided to hold the event at a cricket ground adjacent to the party leader Usman Dar’s factory in Sialkot, reported 24NewsHD TV channel.

The PTI crumbled under the pressure after scores of its workers were detained by the police for carrying out preparations illegally at the venue owned by the Christian community.   

Earlier, police in Sialkot stormed the venue of the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf’s (PTI) public gathering late Friday night and rounded up several party workers, including party’s senior leader Usman Dar. However, they were released hours after following party's decision to change the rally venue.

According to reports, a large contingent of police reached the venue, baton-charged and fired teargas shells at the PTI workers who were making arrangements for the party’s gathering, which was due to be held today (May 14, 2022) but for which, as per the local administration’s claim, the permission had not been granted. 

The party workers resisted the police operation as they stood in front of the machinery sent to remove the chairs, the stage and other material arranged for the event.  

Giving the reason for not granting the permission, the administration said that members of the Christian community were opposed to holding of the gathering on the piece of land they claimed belonged to the church. 

Talking to the media, PTI leader Usman Dar said that the party had been granted permission for the event eight days back. “But only yesterday the authorities withdrew the permission,” he said, and expressed the resolve that come what may former prime minister and PTI Chairman Imran Khan would come to Sialkot to address today’s rally.

In a related development, PTI Chairman and former prime minister Imran Khan called a meeting of the party leaders to discuss the situation in Sialkot.

Shehbaz Gill condemns police’s assault

Reacting to police action in Sialkot late Friday night, PTI leader Shehbaz Gill said that what the nation witnessed was an act of intimidation by the goons of the ‘imported government’.    

Taking to Twitter, he said that holding public gatherings was the party workers’ basic right, and none could snatch that right from them.     

He went on to add that the ‘imported government’ whose days had been numbered was resorting to such brutal tactics because it was feeling jittery on account of PTI’s rising popularity. “Police’s operation in Sialkot is a clear reflection of that nervousness,” he added.

Reporter: Mian Muhammad Ishfaq