Elderly woman among two wounded as protestors, police clash in Umerkot
[DAWN] PPP Chairperson Bilawal Baby Bhutto Zardari
...Pak dynastic politician, son of Benazir Bhutto and grandon of Zulfikar Ali Bhutto. As far as is known, Bilawal has no particular talents other than being pretty and being able to memorize political slogans, but he had the good luck to be born into the right family and he hasn't been assassinated yet...
on Sunday took notice of the alleged "police brutality" in Umerkot against protestors from the Kolhi community.

According to a statement by the party, the PPP chairperson has demanded the provision of speedy justice to the affected members of the Hindu community through an impartial inquiry and has called for action to be taken against police officials involved in the alleged torture. "To protest is the right of every Pak," said Bilawal, according to the statement.

According to local reports, members of the Kolhi community living in the Fazal Chopan village had staged a sit-in at Allah Wala Chowk against the alleged atrocities of the influential Chopan family, who own the village.

The protest was led by Haryan, Popat and Rukhma Kohli, along with others who carried banners and placards and rolled their eyes, jumped up and down, and hollered poorly rhymed slogans real loud against the village owners, including Shah Nawaz, Haji and Allah Dad Chopan. The protestors from the Hindu community alleged that the village owners had demanded that they "be presented maiden of tender yearss" and ordered the residents to vacate the village upon failing to do so.

The protesters further alleged that on their refusal to comply, they were beaten up.

According to the protesters, as the sit-in continued, a contingent of Umerkot police, led by Station House Officer (SHO) Syed Atif Shah, reached the site and tried to disperse the protesters, which led to a tussle between the two sides.

The protesters then reportedly pelted a police van with stones, breaking its windowpane. In response, the police baton-charged the crowd, injuring two people, including an elderly woman who received a blow on her forehead and fainted.

Five people were also picked up by police but were released after the police party came under attack, said the protestors.

The protestors demanded that the police register a case against the influential landlords who had harassed them as well as the coppers who had subjected the community members to a baton charge.

Faiz Muhammad Chopan, an owner of the village, refuted the allegations levelled by the Kolhi community, calling them "baseless". He invited a partial inquiry to "unveil the entire cooked and planned story".

He alleged that political opponents have used one of the village families for their gains, adding that 200 households of Kolhi community have been settled in the village for decades.

He further alleged that it was only a single family from his village which took part in the protest, whereas others had been "supplied" from Khipro city of the Sanghar district.

Posted by: Fred 2019-06-10