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ISLAMABAD: The police have booked a motorcyclist who was injured in a collision with a vehicle driven by an American diplomat for reckless driving, in response to a complaint lodged by the police themselves.

A local US embassy staffer was also booked for allegedly resisting the police, while the diplomat driving the vehicle, Second Secretary Chad Rex Auburn, was cleared.

Nazakat Aslam Awan and Mohammad Waseem were injured after their motorcycle was hit by a jeep driven by Mr Auburn on Pak Secretariat Chowk Sunday night. The injured were taken to a hospital.

Police officers told Dawn that when the police arrived at the scene, the diplomat refused to leave his vehicle.

He then called local and foreign embassy staff, including the chief security officer.

Police said embassy staffers resisted the police and manhandled them, and also attempted to help the diplomat flee. The police shifted the diplomat and his vehicle to the police station, along with the chief security officer.

Cases were later registered against the injured motorcyclists and the embassy’s chief security officer.

The motorcyclists have been booked under PPC 279 (rash driving or riding on a public way) in response to a complaint by Sub-Inspector Mohammad Yousaf. The FIR stated that the motorcyclist did not stop while driving from Agha Khan Road to Pak Secretariat Chowk.

It said that the motorcyclist drove in front of the vehicle, which was coming from Constitution Avenue and heading towards Margalla Road, resulting in an accident.

Another case was registered against the embassy’s chief security officer in response to a complaint by Secretariat Station House Officer (SHO) Inspector Abdul Sattar under PPC sections 343 and 186. The complainant alleged that the official misbehaved and attacked him, and manhandled police officers.

The police said the official was arrested and produced before a magistrate, where he was released on bail.

Lawyers have expressed surprise over the registration of a case against the injured motorcyclists.

Advocate Raja Ghaneem Aabir Khan said he had never seen a case in which an injured was made a suspect by the police. He said such a case would only be registered if the diplomat had lodged a complaint against the motorcyclist.

He added that PPC section 279 could not be applied to someone who was accused of injuring himself in the act, and the police cannot become the complaint under PPC section.

Published in Dawn, May 1st, 2018