Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) leaders Khwaja Salman Rafique and Hafiz Nauman were arrested by Punjab Police after they offered voluntary arrests following an incident allegedly involving their security guards.
The security personnel of the political leaders were reported to have beaten up and tortured an army official.
The two Punjab Assembly members were arrested when they went to the Garden Town police station to join the investigation of the case lodged against four suspected attackers and offered arrest in the case.
ن لیگ کے خواجہ سلمان رفیق نے اپنے گارڈز کی مدد سے پاکستان آرمی کے میجر کو پھینٹی لگائی اور فرار ہوگیا. یہ دن بھی آنے تھے؟#امپورٹڈ_حکومت_نامنظور pic.twitter.com/mnZruCgSeV
— meddy tweets (@meddytweets) April 13, 2022
According to police officials, Major Harris, an army officer, was brutally beaten by Khawaja Salman and Hafiz Nauman’s guards on Wednesday evening and his vehicle was also damaged. The officer registered a case against seven assailants at the Garden Town police station.
Four guards involved in the case were arrested last evening.
Police officials stated that the footage from the Safe City cameras and mobile phone videos were being examined for the investigation of this case.
The arrested accused were shifted to the CIA Model Town police station for interrogation and will soon be presented in court.
Khwaja Imran Nazir’s comments
PML-N leader Khawaja Imran Nazir in conversation with the media said that he was waiting for the meeting inside the police station as the officers were interrogating Khawaja Salman and Hafiz Nauman.
“Salman Rafique vowed that he came to know about this incident later and both of them came to the station on their own,” Nazir said, expressing solidarity with the arrested individuals’ families and condemning the arrest.
Nazir maintained that his party always offered support in legal matters.
“When Shehbaz Sharif was the chief minister, his son-in-law also had to stay in jail because it was necessitated by the rule of law,” he said, adding that the PML-N members would be proven innocent after the relevant institutions had investigated the case.
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He further claimed that those made the videos of the assault viral thought Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif would arrest his own servants, but our party members offered voluntary arrests.
“The investigation will reveal that they were not aware of the situation and their mobile location will further prove it. We have full faith in the institutions and the judiciary,” he said.
Victim 'severely beaten'
Maj Harris’ counsel Barrister Mian Ali Ashfaq told the media that his client had been severely beaten and injured and was currently being treated at Civil Medical Hospital.
“When his condition improved, he told his father the details after which we recorded a statement at the police station,” the lawyer said.
He further stated that a transparent investigation was the police's responsibility.
The lawyer said that Major (retd) Rashid and his son Major Harris did not know Salman Rafique or Hafiz Nauman before the incident.
“The plaintiff has no grievances with Salman Rafique or Hafiz Nauman. If there is any culprit in this case, then the police will take their own way”.
‘I travel without guards’
Earlier on Thursday, Khwaja Salman Rafique took to his official Twitter handle to state that the video was spread on social media on behalf of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf's (PTI) trolls and on their support channel.
سوشل میڈیا پر پی ٹی آئی ٹرولزکیجانب سےاور انکے حامی چینل پر ایک حساس ادارے کے افسر پر میری موجودگی میں میرے گارڈز کے ھاتھوں تشددکے حوالہ سے پھیلایا جانیوالا مواد بے بنیاد جھوٹ اور لغو ھے-
واضح رھے کہ میں بغیر گارڈز کے سفر کرتاھوں – میراایسے کسی واقعہ سے کوٸ تعلق نہ ھے-
— Khawaja Salman Rafique (@SalmanRafiquePK) April 13, 2022
“The torture of an officer of a sensitive organisation, at the hands of my guards in my presence, is a baseless lie and nonsense,” he claimed.
He emphasised that he travels without guards and had nothing to do with any such incident.