Home / News / World /  Watch: Imran Khan emerges in gas mask after Lahore Court halts arrest bid

Ousted Pakistan Prime Minister and former cricketer Imran Khan came out of his house when the Pakistan Police left after the Lahore Court directed a temporary halt in the arrest operation. Khan was seen wearing a gas mask in the viral video that has been posted on micro-blogging site Twitter.

Khan seemed to be addressing his followers and loyalists of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaaf (PTI) party outside his Zaman Park home in Lahore. He was surrounded by people who were listening to what the ousted former prime minister had to say.

In a temporary relief, the Lahore High Court directed the Pakistan Police to halt hteir arrest operation till 10 am on 16 March. The court and the Pakistan Police cited the Pakistan Super League (PSL) cricket match going on at the city. 

Police had besieged the 70-year-old opposition leader’s house in the eastern city of Lahore since Tuesday as his supporters hurled rocks and bricks, and swung batons snatched from officers. Police fired tear gas and clashes went on into the afternoon Wednesday before subsiding.

Mint could not individually confirm the authenticity of the video

“Imran khan seen wearing protective gas mask in his residence while his supporters are risking their lives on streets." the video was captioned. 

See the video here

Earlier Wednesday, Khan had emerged from his house to meet with supporters, who had faced tear gas and police batons through the night to defend him from arrest. He said he was ready to travel to Islamabad on March 18 under the arrest warrant, but that police did not accept the offer.

Violence had been reported between Khan's supporters and police in other major cities, including Karachi, Islamabad, the garrison city of Rawalpindi, Peshawar, Quetta and elsewhere in Pakistan. The government sent additional police to Lahore's upscale area of Zaman Park, where Khan lives.

Khan later posed for cameras seated at a long table, showing off piles of spent tear gas shells he said had been collected from around his home.

“What crime did I commit that my house has been attacked like this," he tweeted. Fawad Chaudhry, a senior party leader from Khan’s party claimed hundreds of Khan’s supporters were injured.

At the Islamabad High Court, Khan's lawyer Khawaja Haris petitioned for the suspension of the warrants for the former premier but the court denied the motion.

Khan, who was ousted in a no-confidence vote in Parliament in April, was ordered to appear before a judge in Islamabad on Friday to answer charges of illegally selling state gifts he had received during his term as premier and concealing his assets.

The former premier has avoided appearances in court since November, when he was wounded in a gun attack at a protest rally in eastern Punjab province, claiming he was not medically fit to travel from Lahore to Islamabad to face indictment.

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