LAHORE: Workers of the recently proscribed Tehreek-i-Labbaik Pakistan (TLP) “brutally tortured” a deputy superintendent of police (DSP) and took him, as well as four other officials, hostage on Sunday, spokesperson for Lahore CCPO Rana Arif tweet a post.
Police said the violence occurred after “miscreants” an apparent reference to TLP workers attacked a police station and abducted the DSP, adding that it acted only in “self-defence”.
“Today in the early morning, miscreants attacked Nawankot Police Station where Rangers and Police officers were trapped inside the police station and DSP Nawankot kidnapped and taken to the markaz,” the Punjab police said in a statement, referring to the TLP headquarters. It added that “at least one oil tanker with 50,000 litres of petrol has been taken by the miscreants to the markaz.”
According to the statement, which was tweeted by Punjab police the miscreants were armed and attacked Rangers/police with petrol bombs. “Police and Rangers pushed them back and took back the possession of the police station,” it said, adding that police did not plan or conduct any operation against the mosque or the madressah.
Arif said 11 police officials were injured after “brutal torture” by TLP workers and were under treatment at different hospitals in the city.
Meanwhile, at least three protesters were killed and several others injured during the clash, according to the party’s workers.
A TLP spokesperson said the clash started when police launched an operation to clear the area around Lahore’s Yateem Khana Chowk, where workers of the banned party have been staging a protest since earlier this week.
In a video message, TLP spokesperson Shafiq Ameeni said that “We will bury those killed when the French ambassador exits the country and our agreement (with the government) is implemented.”
Videos on social media showed people carrying away the injured and tending to them. However, some users pointed out that the videos were old and were shared without context.
TLP workers wielding sticks and stones also climbed atop the Orange Line Metro Train, while speeches were being made through the area mosque to call people for support, according to the city police spokesperson. He said the protesters were pelting stones at police and Rangers personnel.
The TLP also shared a video of a senior official of Punjab police, who was allegedly abducted by its workers on Sunday. The injured police official, ashamedly under duress, said that an operation was being carried out to clear the area outside a police station when he was “captured” by the “enraged” crowd.