PESHAWAR: Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa Chief Minister Pervaiz Khattak on Friday moved the Peshawar High Court against Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif and Inspector General Mushtaq Sukhera for subjecting Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf workers to torture on October 31.
The petition appealed to the PHC to declare shelling, torturing and blockade of roads by the respondents, including police officers of Punjab, illegal.
The petition was filed by Khattak, K-P Health Minister Shahram Tarakai and Education Minister Atif Khan through their counsel Babar Awan. The petitioners adopted the stance that they (the demonstrators) were exercising their fundamental right to join a peaceful assembly in the federal capital which they were not allowed to exercise.
The federal government, it said, had declared the assembly unlawful, barred the protesters from moving around freely in Islamabad and deliberate targeting of the K-P CM, the petition said.
It said PTI workers gathered at the Swabi interchange were unarmed and peaceful where CM Khattak and K-P Assembly Speaker Asad Qaiser addressed them. Then they started marching peacefully towards Islamabad to remind the federal government to come clean on the Panama financial scandal.
There the Punjab police, on the orders of the federal and Punjab governments, resorted to indiscriminate baton charge and tear gas shelling without lawful cause.
“Thousands of people were injured and hundreds fell unconscious due to the use of expired tear gas against innocent people.
“That the vehicle of the chief minister was specifically targeted with intense shelling and video grabs of private TV channels were testimony to the indiscriminate use of state machinery against peaceful people.”
The petition added the motorway was closed with containers on the order of the federal government and in violation of the Islamabad High Court verdict that resulted in the loss of lives of two army officers, as well as miseries to public at large.
Terming the action of the federal government on the orders of the prime minister and Punjab chief minister unlawful, the petition adopted that it is in violation of Article 2 of the Constitution.
“The action of respondents were detrimental to the life and liberty, body, reputation and personal belongings, vehicles and other property of the citizens which was put into jeopardy by the respondents in violation of provincial autonomy and legal constitutional guarantee provided to peaceful citizens,” the petition noted.
It said all actions taken by the respondents in sheer disregard of express provisions of Article 24 of the Constitution “as instead of providing peaceful citizens with protection, they were baton charged and subjected to torture”.
By Fawad Ali Published in The Express Tribune