3 cops suspended over violence during Aurat March in Islamabad
Clashes erupted during the Aurat March being held in the federal capital, as the men organizers of the march reportedly scuffled with the media present at the spot.
Reportedly, two cameramen, two photographers and a woman reporter have been injured.
On being stopped from marching, a woman participant allegedly pushed aside Superintendent of Police Nausherwan for blocking their path.
Police are said to have retaliated with baton-charge on the women marchers.
Meanwhile, the interior minister has taken of Islamabad police’s behavior towards the women marchers, and said action will be taken under the law against those responsible.
Lamenting the incident, Rana Sanaullah said women are very respectable members of society, and apologized for misbehavior with the participants.
The minister summoned the Islamabad IGP over the issue.
Later, three policemen who allegedly baton-charged the women marchers were suspended from service.
The police spokesperson said more responsible people were being identified and action will be taken accordingly.
Earlier, participants of Islamabad’s Aurat March started their procession from the National Press Club to D-Chowk.
However, police blocked the roads by putting up containers and barbed wire. At this, the march participants and police force came face to face.
The women removed the barbed wires placed in front of the press club. Additional contingents of women officials of Islamabad police were summoned.
Federal minister Sherry Rehman condemned the baton charge by Islamabad police during a peaceful Aurat March procession.
“This incident must be thoroughly investigated, and those responsible must be held accountable. It is a shame that such actions took place on International Women’s Day, and it is not what we fought for. I condemn this act of violence and have already requested an inquiry into the matter. Furthermore, I have informed the interior minister about the situation, and we will not tolerate such behavior in the future,” the minister stressed.
The organizers of Aurat March Lahore also protested against the violence in Islamabad.
“Aurat March Lahore registers its anger and disgust at police violence on Islamabad’s women and khawajasira marchers – it is our constitutional right to come out on the streets, and the police’s duty to facilitate it. We stand together, and demand immediate accountability,” said a statement.