Scores of supporters of Imran Khan barricaded his residence on Friday to guard him as the previous Pakistani prime minister waited to listen to a ruling on whether or not safety forces might launch an operation to arrest him for failing to point out up in court docket.
Forward of the court docket choice, a tense calm prevailed in Khan’s Lahore neighbourhood which earlier this week was the scene of pitched battles between a whole lot of supporters and safety forces that had tried to power the previous worldwide cricketer to attend a listening to in a case by which he’s accused of promoting state items given to him whereas he was prime minister.
Khan denies the fees.
Though there was no police presence on Friday, witnesses mentioned Khan’s supporters, armed with batons and iron rods, remained stationed exterior his residence.
Khan’s aide Fawad Chadhury mentioned his celebration, the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf, had filed one other plea on Friday on the Islamabad Excessive Courtroom to droop the warrant after a decrease court docket rejected an analogous plea a day earlier.
“Our supporters are exterior Imran Khan’s home however I do not assume issues will change into excessive,” he added.
Police are ready for the court docket ruling on the warrant earlier than taking any motion, the provincial authorities’s data minister Amir Mir mentioned.
The violence on Tuesday and Wednesday, by which protesters hurled petrol bombs and safety forces used tear gasoline and water cannon, had raised fears of a brand new political stand-off in nuclear-armed Pakistan, which is already grappling with an financial disaster.
The arrest warrant was issued by a court docket in Islamabad when Khan, 70, failed to seem earlier than it over fees that he unlawfully bought state items given to him by overseas dignitaries when he was prime minister from 2018 to 2022.
The Election Fee of Pakistan had discovered him responsible and barred Khan from holding public workplace for one parliamentary time period.
Khan has mentioned he was prepared to submit a written endeavor that he would voluntarily seem earlier than the court docket on Saturday, however the court docket mentioned such an endeavor was inadequate. It was unclear whether or not the court docket listening to on Friday would take this endeavor into consideration.
The authorized proceedings in opposition to Khan started after he was ousted from workplace in a parliamentary vote early final yr. Since then, he has been demanding a snap election and holding nationwide protests, and was shot and wounded in a type of rallies.
Present Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif has rejected Khan’s calls for, saying an election can be held as scheduled later this yr.
(This story has not been edited by NDTV employees and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)