LAHORE: In a surprising move, former prime minister Imran Khan granted local and international media unrestricted access to his Zaman Park residence on Thursday.
This action was taken to refute the Punjab caretaker government’s allegations that dozens of miscreants involved in the May 9 riots were hiding at his house.
Following the government’s accusation, all roads leading to Imran Khan’s residence were blocked to traffic, raising speculation of a possible raid and arrest. However, instead of facing a raid, the media was invited inside the premises to verify the claims made by the Punjab government.
The PTI security team allowed journalists to freely explore the residence and document every inch of it, even permitting entry into the private areas. This unprecedented access was intended to debunk the government’s assertions and provide evidence to the contrary.
The Zaman Park residence, which was previously heavily guarded, witnessed a notable absence of police personnel during the media visit. The journalists were able to move around the premises without any hindrance, examining the house and its surroundings in detail.
Imran Khan himself addressed the media later in the day, maintaining a defiant stance. He accused the government of planning to vandalize his house under the guise of a raid, similar to a previous incident. Imran challenged the government to name the alleged forty terrorists supposedly hiding in his residence.
While expressing his party’s resilience, Imran condemned the mistreatment of women by the police, specifically referring to the treatment of female family members of PTI leaders and workers.
Earlier in the day, the police claimed to have arrested eight miscreants who were allegedly attempting to flee from Imran Khan’s residence. A video of these arrests was shared with the media as evidence supporting the government’s claim.
Caretaker Information Minister Amir Mir acknowledged the arrests and stated that the footage substantiated the government’s position. However, he cited the Pakistan Army Act 1952 as the reason for not disclosing further details regarding the individuals or the specific house they were connected to.
This unfolding situation continues to attract significant media attention, shedding light on the tensions between Imran Khan and the Punjab caretaker government.