TOBA TEK SINGH/KHANEWAL-/LAHORE – At least two persons was killed and more than 50 injured, as violent protests against unprecedented loadshedding continued in various cities town of Punjab for the third consecutive day.

The deadliest clashes were reported from the Kamalia town of Toba Tek Singh, where hundreds of enraged protesters attacked the residence of Riaz Fatiana, who is PML-Q MNA. Resultantly, his guards opened fire at the people, killing two of them, including a 14-year-old boy, and injuring more than 18 others. Nine of the injured, a private TV channel correspondent Rana Tajammal among them, were shifted to the DHQ Hospital Toba Tek Singh.

Some media outlets reported three deaths in the firing incident, but it could not be confirmed till filing of this news story.

RPO Aftab Cheema and Commissioner Tahir Hussain also reached Kamalia to supervise the damage control efforts. Police arrested 15 guards of Fatiana and also seized arms from their possession before shifting them to some unknown location. Later, a case was registered against Fatiana and 17 of his associates and guards. As the reports of the killings spread across the town, people reacted in a more violent fashion and torched at least 13 vehicles, including six of police. They also overpowered Asif, one of the gunmen of Fatiana, and severely tortured him. He was admitted in the THQ Hospital Kamalia in a critical condition.

A group of protesters also attacked the house of PPP woman MNA Begum Beelum Husnain, but aerial firing by her guards forced them to flee the scene. Heavy police contingents were called from all police stations of the district to control the situation. Dozens of people were injured as a result of police baton charge, while the Kamalia DSP and SHOs of Rajana and Kamalia City were also wounded during the clashes.

There was a complete shutter down strike in Khanewal to mourn the Monday’s killings due to the firing by the guards of the adviser to the prime minister, Ahmed Yar Hiraj, and ERRA Chairman Hamid Yar Hiraj MNA from the PML-Q.

The strike call was given by the local traders’ representative body. Situation remained tense throughout the day, as people held demonstrations in every part of the city and blocked roads. They also set ablaze a motor cycle parked in front of the Mepco office, as they demanded arrest of the responsible persons and chanted slogans against the federal government. Police resorted to teargas use when people tried to troch a private power plant. Due to the worsening law and order situation in the city, the district administration has called additional police from Vehari, Multan and Jhang districts. According to the DRO, the FIR No 349/12 under sections 302, 324, 148, 149 of the PPC has been registered against eight unidentified persons with the Khanewal City Police Station, while SHO Zulfiqar Aulakh has been suspended on the orders of Punjab Minister Haji Ehsanuddin Qureshi.

Protest was also reported from Faisalabad, Burewala, Gujranwala, Bahawalpur, Chakwal, Chiniot, Rawat, Multan, Dera Ghazi Khan, Vehari, Muzaffargarh, Lodharan, Bahawalpur, Mian Channu, Chichawatni, Kabirwala, Haroonabad, Yazman, Rajanpur, Layyah and several other cities of the province.

In Rawalpindi, the energy starved attacked the office of electricity distribution company at the Committee Chowk and damaged the structure. They also pelted stones at vehicles and businesses.