“Foreign Cyclists Accuse Punjab Police of Serious Misconduct and Sexual Harassment During Their Journey”
In a troubling turn of events, foreign tourists cycling through Sadiqabad towards Lahore have made serious allegations of assault and sexual harassment against the Punjab police. The incident reportedly occurred on January 25, with a video surfacing on Saturday capturing a police attack on the cyclists, including Alex Sidney from Italy, Charlie West from the UK, and Motahhareh Abbasi from Iran.
Despite being assigned a Punjab police escort for their security, the cyclists claim they were attacked by the very police meant to ensure their safety. The disturbing encounter unfolded when, during a breakfast stop at a roadside hotel, a different police van arrived, not part of their assigned escort.
According to Alex, ASI Liaqat of the Punjab police began aggressively interacting with Motahhareh, instructing her to get up without providing any explanation. When questioned, the officer allegedly attempted to snatch a camera, physically assaulted Alex, and tried to hit him with a large stick before fleeing with the camera.
A dramatic incident followed as the police vehicle attempted to leave, with Alex jumping onto it to prevent the theft of his camera. Despite the chaos, their assigned police escort allegedly maintained a distance and did not intervene.
Further incidents of assault were reported, including alleged deliberate attempts by police vehicles and motorcycles to knock down the cyclists, with accusations of harassment during their journey through Punjab.
The tourists visited Ahmedpur Lamma Police Station to file a complaint, but the officer on duty reportedly refused to register it, suggesting they seek help through social media. Additionally, Motahhareh leveled serious allegations of sexual harassment, stating that policemen from all three provinces they traveled in harassed her, with the situation being worse in Punjab.
This disturbing account raises concerns about the safety and security of foreign tourists in the region, prompting calls for a thorough investigation into the alleged misconduct by Punjab police.
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