LAHORE: Muhafiz force officials brutally beat up a road side restaurant owner and dragged him to the Lytton Road police stations when he demanded that they pay the bill.
Later, Tikka shop owner Younas informed The Express Tribune the officers offered him Rs 40 as a full settlement of the Rs 140 bill. The three men thrashed me and broke restaurant chairs and tables on the road, causing loss of Rs 12,000.
They took me and my employee Shahwab Khan to the Lytton Road police station where they locked us up on charges of picking a fight with the police, claimed Younas.
After the Muhafiz police officers took off with Younas and his employees, the locals staged a protest – chanting anti-police slogans and burning tyres – for their release. Younas stated that the police officials threatened him with consequences in case of informing the police high ups about the incident or quoting any thing to the media. Later, the police released him after forcibly obtaining his thumb print on succumbing to the protests pressure.
He said that it was routine for several policemen of Lytton Road police station, Rivaz Garden police post and Sanda police station to have meals. He said they also brought their guests and dined at his hotel occasionally while he mostly resisted asking them to pay their dues for the food as they would always threaten to close down his restaurant.
Lytton Road official Zafar Ahmed dismissed the allegations. The concerned superintendent of police (SP) Dr Haider Ashraf stated that he has received no complaint. He said the restauranteur should file an application against any police officers in case of a complaint.