LAHORE: The Model Town report on Tuesday stated that police were armed with tear gas shells and
Justice Baqar Najafi’s report on the Model Town incident mentioned that there was disparity in the statements of Punjab Law Minister Rana Sanaullah and the chief minister’s secretary.
The 132-page report was made public by Punjab Government after the Lahore High Court had issued orders to release it.
The report cited that there was contradiction in the statements made by Rana Sanaullah and Chief Minister Shehbaz Sharif’s statements regarding the incident.
The report stated that negotiations between Pakistan Awami Tehreek and the district administration remained inconclusive.
“Police tried to clear barriers under the guidance of SP Model Town,” stated the report.
As per the report, when the operation to remove barriers began, protesters pelted police with stones and chanted slogans against Punjab Government. The report mentioned that while protesters were armed with sticks, police had tear gas shells and sub-machine guns.
The Baqar Najafi Commission report also mentioned how a fraction of PAT workers attacked police at 3 am. In response, police fired sub-machine guns and tear gassed the crowd.
Police also baton charged the crowd, according to the Baqir Najafi report.
Punjab Law Minister Rana Sanaullah said on Tuesday that the Model Town incident report had been made public on the internet in compliance of orders issued by Chief Minister Shehbaz Sharif.
Speaking during a press conference, Rana Sanaullah said that since the last two-and-a-half years, the Model Town report had deliberately been made controversial.
“There is nothing in the report that holds Chief Minister Shehbaz Sharif responsible for the incident,” he said.
He insisted that Punjab Chief Minister Shehbaz Sharif was not aware of the incident when it unfolded. It was only after he saw it on television, did he come to know about the clash that had taken place, claimed Sanaullah.
Rana Sanaullah said that an attempt had been made in the report to make Shehbaz Sharif’s comments suspicious. He said that the Model Town report was based on unverified reports.
“The testimonies that the Model Town report is based on are unrelated,” he claimed. “The conflict took place as a result of the resistance put up by Awami Tehreek workers,” he added.
Story first published: 5th December 2017