A Pakistani court on Tuesday issued non-bailable warrants for the arrest of former prime minister Imran Khan in two cases related to arson attacks during the May 9 violence which erupted following his arrest in a corruption case.
Lahore police on May 10 registered two FIRs against Khan and other Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI ) party leaders on charges of attacking and torching a ruling Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) party office and a container.
"Anti-Terrorism Court (ATC) Lahore judge Abher Gul Khan on Tuesday issued non-bailable warrants for the arrest of PTI chairman Imran Khan and six other leaders of his party in two cases of arson attacks," a court official told PTI.
He said police might arrest the former-cricketer-turned politician and produce him before the court in these cases.
A source in the Punjab government told PTI that no direction had come from the "top" (a reference to the powerful military establishment) as yet to nab the former premier after the issuance of arrest warrants against him.
Other PTI leaders whose non-bailable arrest warrants have been issued include Khan's nephew Hassaan Niazi, former federal ministers Hammad Azhar, Murad Saeed and Jamshed Iqbal Cheema, former provincial cabinet members Musarrat Cheema and Mian Aslam Iqbal.
Khan, in a tweet on Tuesday, questioned why no investigation of attacks on the military and state installations had been carried out yet.
"Question that needs to be asked is, how come there is no investigation so far on 16 unarmed protesters confirmed shot dead by our security forces (while no policeman was injured by any bullets)," he said.
"Three of the unarmed protesters, because of bullet wounds, had to have their legs amputated while nine others who are suspected to have died, we have no news as their relatives are either underground or too scared of the police to speak out," Khan added.
The 70-year-old PTI chief further said that a thorough probe would have been held by now, and the government held accountable in any society ruled by law.
"There has been no independent investigation even on the arson that took place on the 9th of May as the government is busy using that as a pretext to dismantle Pakistan's biggest political party," he alleged.
Widespread violence erupted in Pakistan after Khan was arrested by paramilitary personnel inside the Islamabad High Court on May 9. He was later released on bail.
Over 20 military installations and state buildings, including military headquarters in Rawalpindi, were damaged or torched in the violent protests that followed Khan's arrest.
According to PTI, law enforcement agencies arrested over 10,000 party workers across Pakistan, mostly from Punjab.
Khan, the cricketer-turned-politician, was ousted from power after losing a no-confidence vote in his leadership, which he alleged was part of a US-led conspiracy targeting him for his independent foreign policy on Russia, China and Afghanistan.