Rana Sanaullah tortured

Published March 10, 2003

FAISALABAD, March 9: The deputy opposition leader of the Punjab Assembly, Rana Sanaullah Khan, who had been picked up on Saturday night, was thrown on the service lane of the Motorway ‘in serious condition’ four hours later.

Rana Sanaullah had driven away from his chamber in the district courts at about 9pm on Saturday night in the company of his secretary, Tariq Janbaz.

A dozen masked men made him stop his car at the Circular Road, pushed out the secretary, blew up the tyres using a dagger, covered his face with a black mask and took him away. After a three- to four-minute drive, they reached a place where his face was uncovered.

Sanaullah found himself in a room which, according to him, was the office of an intelligence agency situated near the Regency Arcade on the Mall Road.

He said he was brutally beaten by the kidnappers, who included an army officer, apparently a major, whom he had seen before.

His head, eyebrows, moustaches and beard were shaved off. Then they gave him a severe beating using iron rods, inflicted multiple lacerations to his body with the help of blades and sprayed some chemical on the wounds, which caused unbearable pain.

After about four hours, he said, he was taken away in a car and thrown at a place on the Motorway, which was at a walking distance of 20 to 25 minutes from the nearest filling station. He had to cover the distance on foot in serious condition to be able to contact his family by phone.

Sanaullah was admitted to the local DHQ Hospital.

Doctors found 22 lacerations to the body and head of the MPA, six of which were likely to cause lasting complications. Injuries were inflicted in a way to make the victim feel pain for the rest of his life. No bone was fractured.

A special board has been constituted under Dr Mohammad Akram for detailed examination and issuance of medical certificate.

Confined to Room No 1 of the private ward of the local District Headquarters Hospital, the PML-N leader, with tears in his eyes, told this correspondent that he was “paying the price for unmasking the hypocrisy of the present rulers who, in fact, are stooges of the GHQ and were helping the latter call the shots. “

He said the treatment meted out to him was an eye-opener for all those who were chanting the chorus of restoration of democracy. He claimed that it was the second time that he had been subjected to physical and mental torture in a bid to make him stop talking about the high handed ways of the “real rulers” of the country.

He said he would continue to raise his voice for the cause of democracy and for exposing the misdeeds of the military government and its “Q-League stooges”.

Meanwhile, PML-N MNAs Abid Sher Ali, Asif Tauseef, Fazal Karim and Raja Nadir Pervaiz, former PML-N parliamentarians Safdar Rehman, Abdul Mannan, Sher Ali, Akram Ansari, Zahid Tauseef, Khwaja Islam, Mohammad Afzal and Zahid Goraya, PPP MPAs Rana Aftab Ahmed Khan, Raja Riaz, Jehanzaib Imtiaz, Dr Asad Moazam, Faiz Kamoka and PPP central leader Umer Draz Khan said at a press conference in the hospital that the ruling junta was victimizing the elected representatives just to stop them from raising voice in the assemblies.

They claimed that kidnapping opposition MNAs, MPAs and other leaders had become a routine practice of government agencies, which could be dangerous not only for the federation but also for peace of the country.

They threatened to resist such incidents “physically” in consultation with the central PML-N leadership. If such a thing happens again, government agencies would get a tit-for-tat response from the PML-N leaders, responsibility for which will rest entirely on government’s shoulders, they warned.

PA session: The PPP Parliamentarians and the PML-N have decided to make a requisition for the Punjab Assembly session to discuss the abduction and torture of deputy opposition leader Rana Sanaullah allegedly by ISI men.

Talking to newsmen, PPP’s Aftab Ahmed Khan said that the incident was aimed at sabotaging the parliamentary system and paving way for the army to recapture power.

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