Three-member panel to probe into pre-poll violence in Pakistan

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Islamabad, Sep 30 (UNI) Pakistan government has constituted a high-level committee to probe into yesterday's violence outside the Election Commission when it was scrutinising nomination papers for presidential polls.

Police clashed with lawyers and opposition activists who tried to enter the building chanting slogans against President Pervez Musharraf who is seeking re-election in the October 6 polls.

Earlier, the Supreme Court dismissed challenges to Gen Musharraf's re-election bid.

Many lawyers, jounrnalists and two ruling coalition lawmakers were injured in the clash. Police charged batons and used tear gas to disperse protesters.

The three-member panel was formed on the directive of Prime Minister Shaukat Aziz, who was present in the Commission building when the clash occurred. Mr Aziz had proposed President Musharraf's nomination.

The inquiry committee will be headed by Additional Secretary (Interior) Imtiaz Qazi. Joint Secretary Rashad Bashir Mazari and Additional Deputy Commissioner Islamabad Aamer Ahmad Ali are other two members.

The committee would submit its report before the government within ten days.

The Prime Minister said those who tried to take the law into their own hands during the scrutiny of nomination papers for the presidential election would be dealt with according to the law.

In an interview with PTV, the Prime Minister said it was an important day because the Election Commission was handling a very important matter and some people tried to create hurdle in the process.

''It was an unfortunate incident and we cannot allow such type of politics,'' Mr Aziz said.

The prime minister said it is unfortunate that the lawyers, who are the custodians of law, have behaved in this way.


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