GUJRANWALA/KASUR - Police have allegedly started crackdown on PML-N activists here to stop them from welcoming ex-prime minister Nawaz Sharif in Lahore while hundreds of activists have gone underground.

They have also switched off their cellphones to avoid the arrest. Gakhar Police raided the house of Municipal Committee Chairman Gakhar Waseem Yaqoob Butt and took him to unknown place while deputy mayor Gujranwala Rana Maqsood and chairman union council Sarfraz Ahmed succeeded to escape during the raid.

Sources told that police have prepared a list of about 300 PML-N workers for arresting them while PML-N leaders have advised the workers to go underground to avoid arrest.

Many caravans from Gujranwala city will leave for Lahore from the residences of former foreign minister Khurram Dastgir Khan, former MPAs Imran Khalid Butt, Abdul Rauf Mughal, Taufeeq Butt, Usman Ibrahim and from other places to welcome their leader on Friday.

In order to ensure peace and security during elections, the district police are taking certain steps against criminal elements.

They have arrested 23 suspects, recovered valuables and a large quantity of liquor, drugs and arms from their possession.

According to police sources, police have launched a vigorous crackdown on criminals under the instructions of Kasur DPO Muntazir Mehdi.

During the operation, the police arrested nine suspects of category A.

In a crackdown on drug-peddlers, the police nabbed 10 suspects, recovered 1.5kg of hashish and 109 litres of liquor from their possession.

The police registered cases against them and put them behind bars.

The police also nicked three suspected persons and recovered two pistols from them. A bookmaker was also held with Rs10,000 worth gambling money.

Under directives from Punjab IG Police, the district police set up pickets on different city roads and impounded 46 vehicles whose drivers failed to show documents.

The police also arrested four suspected persons travelling in the vehicles impounded.

A search operation, under the supervision of DSP M Arshad, was conducted in jurisdiction of Ganda Singh Wala police.

During the operation, the police combed 46 houses and verified the identity of 82 individuals through a biometric device.