An FIR was registered on Monday against 15 Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) workers, including three nephews of a National Assembly member, after they allegedly ransacked a Multan Electric Power Company (MEPCO) sub-division office and beat up the SDO.
The FIR included allegations of terrorism, assault and damaging a public building and creating a law and order situation.
According to the complaint moved by the MEPCO chief executive at Mumtazabad police station, SDO Salman Saeed had been receiving calls for several days from PML-N workers demanding that electricity bills of some residences in Ghalla Mandi be amended.
He said they had the warned SDO of dire consequences if the bill was not ‘corrected’.
He said on Monday, Saeed was attacked by 15 PML-N workers, led by Abid Dogar, Saeed Dogar and Ahmed Dogar - nephews of MNA Abdul Ghaffar Dogar - who broke into his office near the Corn Market.
MEPCO said Saeed hid in a bathroom while the workers smashed office furniture. He said when they found him, they beat him until he fainted. He was taken to Nishtar Hospital where doctors said his condition was serious.
Scores of MEPCO workers boycotted work and gathered at Qasimpur Road. They protested against MNA Dogar and chanted slogans against the PML-N, burnt party flags and tyres, suspending traffic for several hours.
All Pakistan Wapda Hydro Electric Union chairman Chaudhary Khalid led a protest at Bahawalpur Road. The protesters blocked the road for traffic, saying the suspects should be arrested as soon as possible. They threatened to shut down power in the city if the suspects were not arrested within a day. Later, the Mumtazabad SHO and Mumtazabad DSP met the protesters and assured them that action would be taken against those responsible. The protesters dispersed after iftar, when the FIR was registered.
Residents of Mumtazabad also protested against the government after power broke down in the area.
Aaqil Hussain, a resident of Ghalla Mandi, said MEPCO workers had abandoned repairs after they heard news of the incident.
“There has been no power in our colony for several hours,” he said. “It is unfair that the ordinary man must suffer for the crimes of a few people in power.”
Doggar declined comment, saying it was best to wait till the investigation was completed.
Published in The Express Tribune, July 7th, 2015.
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