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Pakistan: 3 injured as protesters scuffle with police over flour distribution

Shangla: The Karakoram Highway turned into a battlefield when thousands of people staged a sit-in protest against the unjust distribution of wheat flour. Protestors scuffled with the police in the Mera area of Bisham tehsil, News International reported.
The protesters led by the nazims of various village councils affiliated with Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz blocked the highway for vehicular traffic for over five hours, against the unfair distribution of flour sanctioned by the government on Thursday, reported.
A scuffle began between police and the protestors when the protestors pelted stones at the police, three were injured. Police resorted to lathi-charged and teargas shells were lobbed to disperse the people. The local residents said that thousands of people from Mera and adjoining areas took to the Karakoram Highway to protest favouritism in the distribution of flour.
The local nazims of village councils, including Shahzeenat Khan, Ijaz Khan and others were leading the protesters. The protesters placed boulders on the Karakoram Highway and blocked traffic due to which long queues of vehicles bound for Gilgit-Baltistan from Rawalpindi were seen on both sides of the road, the reported.
The passengers and motorists going to and from Gilgit-Baltistan faced great hardships due to the blockade of the highway for over five hours. The police held talks with the protesters to open the road but they were adamant about not allowing a single vehicle to pass through the area.
Three persons sustained injuries when some of the protesters threw stones at the police and the police lathi-charged the protesters and fired teargas and shot into the air to disperse the angry protesters, reported.
The police also arrested three protesters, who were later released after the elders held talks with the police and ended their protest.
The protesters said that Mera had a population of over 50,000 people but the government had established a single point for the distribution of flour due to which the local residents faced hardships in receiving flour, reported. (ANI)

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