Islamabad is currently gearing up for phase two of the Azadi March. Imran Khan had earlier given the government a 6-day ultimatum to dissolve assemblies and announce elections. He warned that he will be back with his protestors.
Pertinent to mention, the police used heavy force against the protestors which sparked public anger against the government. However, it seems that the police may once again use violent measures against the protestors.
Allegedly, the Punjab Police has been advised by the government to use extreme measures against the protestors, including killing. An audio clip is making the rounds on social media where a government official is allegedly advising the Punjab police to do killings in the upcoming PTI protest.
In the audio clip, the government official, who is allegedly Federal Secretary of Interior Ministry Yousuf Naseem Khokar, is berating a police officer for not using extreme force against the protestors. The Federal Secretary said if the police had shot down two-three people in Lahore and blamed it on the protestors then they would have never made it all the way to Islamabad. The officer responded that they will do so the next time.
Moreover, he said the policemen in civil uniforms should surround the media and take them someplace else. He then tasked the officer to devise a strategic plan.
— Asfandyar Bhittani (@BhittaniKhannnn) May 31, 2022
Real or fake?
This audio clip is being shared on social media but it is unclear whether it is real or fake. Some Twitteratis claimed that it is real and some claimed that it is fabricated. Furthermore, one Twitterati asked the uploader of the video to remove the picture of SSP Yasir Afridi as he is not in the audio because he was posted at Nowshera. Netizens are urging clarification on the matter and have also tagged DG ISPR to look into the matter.
Please remove the picture of SSP Yasir Afridi ; he is not in the audio and he was posted at Nowshera and recently transferred to ITP where he has not yet taken over the charge.
— ASAD (@mrasadgillani) May 31, 2022
خدا کیلئے یار،یہ ن لیگ والے کام شروع نہ کریں۔ یہ صریح پراپیگنڈا اور جھوٹی اور فیبریکیٹڈ آڈیو ہے۔کوئی معمولی فہم رکھنے والا انسان بھی سمجھ سکتا ہے
— Muhammad Akmal khan Advocate (@akmalk72) May 31, 2022
While the authenticity of the audio clip remains questionable, there is no denying the chaotic scenes Pakistan witnessed during Imran Khan’s Azadi March earlier. The police had even used a baton charge against former minister Omar Ayub Khan.