Azadi March: Swati seeks FIR against PM over ‘police brutality’

Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) Senator Azam Swati has sought the registration of a first information report (FIR) against Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif, Interior Minister Rana Sanaullah and others over “police brutality” against PTI supporters during the Azadi March last week.

To the effect, he filed a police complaint on Monday in the capital’s Secretariat police station and also named DIG operations Sohail Zafar Chattha and Rangers operations head.

In the complaint, Swati said, “Multiple waves of police brutality and unreasonable use of police force was applied in different parts of the country, including D-Chowk Islamabad, with one objective to seriously impede the fundamental rights of protesters.”

The PTI leader said his arm and other body parts were injured during the march because of the “illegal baton charge conducted by Rangers [officials]” deputed at D-Chowk.

Swati also said he had suffered “serious breathing issues and pain from extreme exposure to CS gas (a common type of tear gas)” because of the shelling and was taken to a hospital.

He alleged that his vehicles were “severely damaged” because of the continuous firing of rubber bullets, shelling and stone-pelting by Islamabad police.

The senator said he was enclosing his medical report, pictures and videos along with his complaint.

“Police violence such as the type used on May 25 is the illegitimate use of authority bestowed in the security forces. Politicians in power such as the names referenced above are notorious for always trying to control and run public officers and civil servants as per their own interests and for the fulfilment of personal or their political party interests,” he added.

It is pertinent to mention here that PTI’s Azadi March on May 25 was preceded by the authorities invoking Section 144 — a measure used to curb gatherings. Shipping containers were put in place on major thoroughfares to block their path.