Islamabad: MNA caught by police, freed by supporters
ISLAMABAD: A Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) legislator was forcibly freed from the police’s custody by his supporters, only an hour after he was arrested on Friday in a fraud case registered last year.
As Anjum Aqeel Khan, MNA from Islamabad, was brought to the Shalimar police station in a police vehicle, his supporters swarmed it. Amid firing in the air and a scuffle between the supporters and policemen, the legislator was taken away from outside the police station, which falls in his constituency.
Taking notice, Interior Minister Rehman Malik ordered to register a case against police officers and arresting them as their negligence led to escape of legislator. He also ordered a judicial inquiry and asked DC Amir Ahmed to submit report in 24 hours.
Till the filing of this report, police have sealed the outer cordon of Islamabad and Rawalpindi with the help of Punjab police. Inspector General of Police (IGP) Bani Amin Khan told reporters that the legislator would be arrested soon, adding that those who took away the MNA would not be spared. “They are lawmakers, yet they break the law.”
He said six persons were arrested and booked under the Anti-Terrorism Act. Two police officers, including the SHO of Shalimar police station, were taken into custody. A case will be registered against them if they are found guilty of negligence, the IGP added.
Another senior police officer, not ready to give his name, said except a DSP, the police team which went to arrest the legislator was taken into custody.
Earlier the MNA came over to the Federal Investigation Agency’s Iqbal Town Office in a case of Rs6 billion land scam, involving National Police Foundation. He has already obtained bail before arrest from a court till July 19.
As under the law, the legislator was bound to appear before the investigating officers, he was directed to meet them on Thursday. But he did not.
However, as he visited the FIA’s Iqbal Town office on Friday evening, his presence was shared with the Shalimar police with direction to arrest him in another case registered with them.
Sub-Divisional Police Officer DSP Ahmed Iqbal and SHO Inspector Fayaz Tanoli were asked to arrest the legislator in a fraud case registered against him in February 2010. They were also directed not to bring him to Shalimar or any other police station of Sadar Zone – Tarnol, Margalla and Golra – as they are located in the legislator’s constituency.
Fearing that his supporters would create trouble, the police officers were asked to take the MNA to a police station of the city or rural zones for detention. The MNA was arrested as he was coming out of the FIA office in a case in which he is alleged to have sold a plot in February last year to two persons and took money from both. But as the plot was handed over, the other claimant – Shabab Ali, a resident of sector I-8, registered a complaint with Shalimar police station against the parliamentarian.
But an hour later after arrest, he was brought to the Shalimar police station. As the arrest was made public, more than 200 supporters of the legislator reached the Shalimar police station. They parked their vehicles at the station’s main gate and street to block the way of police’s vehicle.
As the police vehicle with the legislator reached outside the station, supporters kicked and punched it. It led to a scuffle in which two policemen were injured – one of them suffered a fractured hand. Amid the scuffle, both sides fired in the air.
The act of the supports led in a scuffle with the police and the former beaten and injured two police officials, including a constable whose one hand was fractured. The supporters also fired dozen of shots in air and in retaliation the policemen did the same act. Later the supporters were able take
Anjum Aqeel out of the police vehicle, put him in another car and escaped. After the 30-minute mayhem, the legislator’s supporters also escaped from the scene.
The police arrested six persons from around the police station, saying they were among the supporters and the activists. But some policemen believed that they were onlookers.