In a major development, Caretaker Punjab Chief Minister Syed Mohsin Naqvi along with Inspector General of Police (IGP) Punjab Usman Anwar rubbished claims that PTI worker Ali Bilal died in police custody.
Speaking to journalists in a press conference with Inspector General Punjab Police Usman Anwar in Lahore, Mohsin Naqvi denied the involvement of his administration in the incident.
The Caretaker CM Punjab said the incident of killing of any citizen wasn’t ordinary one, adding that everyone (in the government) sat and decided to kick off investigation into the death of Zille Shah.
Pertinent to mention that the death of PTI worker Ali Bilal, nicknamed Zille Shah, has caused anger among the PTI ranks which accused the Punjab government and police of being responsible for the death as the party leadership claims Bilal was in police custody when he was killed.
Read more: UN demands probe into killing of PTI worker by police torture
Horrific images of the body of the PTI worker in Lahore are also circulating on social media. More details of Bilal’s death have surfaced, including CCTV footage of a private 4X4 vehicle, which can be seen dropping Bilal at a hospital where he was pronounced dead.
علی بلال کے جسم پر درندوں کی طرح حملہ کیا گیا شدید تشدد جان لیوا ثابت ہوا،جسم پر 26 جگہوں پر تشدد کیا گیا سر سے پاؤں تک زخم ہی زخم ایک معصوم پراتناظلم #ظل_شاہ_کو_انصاف_دو pic.twitter.com/4GeIeFaZpU
— PTI (@PTIofficial) March 11, 2023
While responding to the allegations, Mohsin Naqvi said he would have answered the allegations “in a different manner” had he not been in the coveted position.
“It is my responsibility to bear such attacks with restraint but threatening to file a first information report with murder charges totally on the basis of assumptions is too much. I will not surrender. I will prefer going home but will not give in,” the CM told journalists.
He also said that the IG will himself visit the victim’s father, adding the Punjab government will also extend financial assistance to the heirs which it usually does.
محسن نقوی صاحب، اگر آج یہاں ظل شاہ کی جگہ آپ کا بیٹا ہوتا اور رپورٹ میں تشدد کے یہی ناقابل تردید ثبوت آپ کے بیٹے پر کیے جانے کا انکشاف ہوتا،
تو کیا آپ بےحسی سے یہی گفتگو فرماتے جو آج فرما رہے ہیں؟#ظل_شاہ_کو_انصاف_دو pic.twitter.com/IMZub3tf43
— Maleeha Hashmey (@MaleehaHashmey) March 11, 2023
Meanwhile, IG Punjab said that all these people — who brought Ali to the hospital in a 4×4 vehicle — have been arrested and will be presented before a court. He informed that the owner of the vehicle, in which the deceased worker was brought to the hospital, is Raja Shakeel and a member of PTI’s central Punjab wing.
As per the details, Shakeel informed PTI Punjab leader Yasmeen Rashid that a person has been hit by a vehicle. At this, Yasmeen Rashid asked Shakeel — a member of PTI’s central Punjab wing — to come with her to Zaman Park and he went with the former health minister leaving the driver in the car.
Read more: PTI reports claim family of slain worker Ali Bilal ‘abducted’