Islamabad police tear gas PTI protesters near Bani Gala

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Polie attempted to disperse Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) protesters trying to reach party chief Imran Khan’s Bani Gala residence on Sunday with tear gas shells after protesters resorted to stoning a police contingent.

PTI Chairman Imran Khan on Sunday urged party workers to reach Bani Gala even if they had to climb mountains to do so. Protesters would move onto Islamabad on Nov 2 for the party’s planned ‘lockdown’ of the capital, he said.

When a contingent of police led by Senior Superintendent Police Operations Sajid Kiyani reached the scene, the protesters began stoning the police, after which police began using tear gas shells to disperse them.

The protesters set a fire in the surrounding wilderness.

Protesters are trying to reach Imran Khan’s Bani Gala residence via lesser-known unpaved routes running through the wilderness, and police have been unable to stop protesters from doing so.

Police check posts have been erected from Link Road to Bani Gala.

‘PTI has a plan’

PTI’s Ali Zaidi speaking to Dawn.com claimed police had surrounded the area around Bani Gala and were “not letting food, water or people come here.”

“We have invited all PTI workers from across the country to Bani Gala and then we will reach Islamabad on Nov 2. We have a plan and a strategy,” Zaidi said.

Although the government has closed roads near Attock, no other roads in the province have been blocked ‘completely’, according to Punjab Law Minister Rana Sanaullah. Snap-checking of those heading towards Islamabad is being carried out.

The provincial government has also imposed Section 144, banning public gatherings across Punjab until Nov 8.

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