LONDON: British authorities arrested two of former Pakistani prime minister Nawaz Sharif’s grandsons Thursday evening over a scuffle that had broken out near Avenfield House, the Metropolitan Police confirmed.
The verbal argument between the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz’s (PML-N) opponents and Junaid Safdar, the son of party supremo Nawaz Sharif’s daughter, Maryam Nawaz, alongside Hussain Nawaz’s son Zakariya, quickly turned into a physical brawl moments before the Met Police arrived to break up the fight.
Authorities said they had detained the junior Safdar for punching a young man (physical assault) and confirmed that Zakariya had also been arrested.
Maryam Nawaz’s son claimed that the protesters, who have been camping outside the Avenfield House, a luxury apartment scheme, since a few days, had spit on and tried to attack him and threw an umbrella as well.
Later, in a tweet, his mother said the “PTI workers stationed outside London flat shouted [explective] every time they saw Junaid [her son]”.
“Anyone would have reacted,” she added.
In a video obtained by media, one protester can be seen trying to attack the two young Sharifs, with Junaid Safdar bowing out and saving himself in time. A verbal fight ensues again but, in the meantime, British police arrive.
As the Met Police officers try to disentangle the flurry of limbs — the assailant, Junaid Safdar, and Zakariya Hussain — the attacker attempts to flee and Maryam’s son, while taking out his phone, shouts: “Be a man, say what you want now!”
Stating that the injured man hailed from Pakistan despite being fair-skinned, Met Police said he was moved to the hospital.
Over the past few days, protesters have camped outside the Avenfield House and engaged in a slogan-based face-off with the PML-N supporters.
A trolley was also hurled at the door to the Sharifs’ apartment earlier.
Separately, Sharif and his daughter, Maryam Nawaz, flew off from Heathrow Airport to return to Pakistan. They had reached London prior to Eid-ul-Fitr and were expected to land in Lahore around 6PM on Friday, a week after an accountability court sentenced the father and daughter to 11 and eight years, respectively, in prison in the Avenfield Properties reference case.
The National Accountability Bureau (NAB) had disclosed earlier that it has arranged two helicopters to shift the father-daughter duo to the Adiala prison following their arrival in Lahore.