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Photo does not show injured police officers in Zaman Park clashes

It is from October 2021 when clashes broke out between TLP and police

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A photo in the article below contains images some may find graphic.

Claim: A photo shows injured police officers who were targeted by Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) workers during the Zaman Park stand-off in Lahore.

Fact: The photo actually shows injured police constables lying on the ground as a result of a clash with the far-right Tehreek-e-Labbaik Pakistan (TLP) workers in Punjab when they staged a protest in October 2021.

Clashes broke out between the police and PTI supporters on 14 March 2023 ahead of PTI chief Imran Khan’s possible arrest outside his residence in Zaman Park, Lahore. The court had issued orders to detain and present him at a later hearing.

The former prime minister has been absent in the past few hearings of the Toshakhana case, in which a district and sessions court in Islamabad on 13 March issued his arrest warrants.

Fact or Fiction?

On 14 March 2023, Twitter user Akhter Ali (Akhter_656) shared a photo claiming that it shows injured police officers lying on the ground who PTI workers attacked during the Zaman Park operation in Lahore.

*یہ پولیس والے  PTI کی  دہشتگردی  کا  شکار  ہوے  ہیں  اللّه  تعالیٰ  ان  کو  صحت  عطا   فرمائے آمین*

 [These police officers are victims of PTI’s terrorism, may Allah bless them with health, Ameen*],” the tweet reads.

Soch Fact Check used reverse image search tools to ascertain the source of the photo.

We found an article dated 28 October 2021 by the Associated Press of Pakistan (APP) that featured the same photo. The article stated that the image shows badly beaten and injured police constables lying on the ground in Lahore. 

An article by Dawn stated that at least four policemen were martyred and over 250 got injured after Tehreek-i-Labbaik Pakistan (TLP) workers clashed with law-enforcement personnel near Sadhoke in Punjab’s Gujranwala district on 27 October 2021. 

The then-chief minister of Punjab, Usman Buzdar, also tweeted about the incident.

Al Jazeera had reported that the clashes between TLP and the police broke out at an anti-blasphemy rally on a highway in Sheikhupura as the group prepared to march on the capital Islamabad.

Reuters and The Guardian also carried reports about the clashes.

Other photos with the same two police officers also surfaced on social media in October 2021; here, here and here.

Virality:

Soch Fact Check found that the video was shared here and here on Facebook.

The photo was shared here, here, here, here, here, here, here and here on Twitter.

As of writing time, the tweet posted by Akhter Ali received 56,000 post views, 975 retweets and 1,910 likes.

Conclusion: The photo is from October 2021, when clashes erupted between the police and TLP workers in Punjab. It is neither recent nor from Zaman Park.

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