Imran Khan’s Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) supporters and the Lahore Police clashed on Wednesday as the former managed to push their way through the containers deployed on the streets and braved tear gas shelling after answering the ousted prime minister’s call for a ong march onto Isamabad.
Pakistani authorities blocked roads and arrested several supporters of the PTI in a bid to derail the Azadi March called by Khan, a day after the government banned their rally to prevent them from “propagating their misleading agenda”.
On Saturday, Khan, 69, had asked his supporters to march peacefully to Islamabad on May 25 to press for the dissolution of the National Assembly and fresh elections in the country.
Pakistan’s coalition government-led by Shehbaz Sharif, however, has rejected the demand, saying the government will complete its tenure and the polls would be held next year.
Prime Minister Sharif’s coalition government initially allowed the protest but on Tuesday refused to give permission, fearing violence and lawlessness in the wake of the march.