LAHORE: Ecstatic supporters at the Tehrik-i-Insaf's public meeting at Minar-e-Pakistan.—White Star

LAHORE: Enthusiastic Pakistan Tehrik-i-Insaaf (PTI) supporters braved heavy rain to listen to their leader Imran Khan. Excited over huge gathering, Mr Khan asserted that tsunami had come.

Nevertheless Mr Khan had to cut short his speech that needed to spell out party’s much-awaited manifesto, his plan to launch an appeal for political fund-raising to finance party’s election campaign and a key objective – oath-taking of 80,000 elected office-bearers including 23,000 women.

The rally attracted a large crowd from across the country comprising party office-bearers, workers and youth (both boys and girls). Pakhtoons were present at the public meeting in large number.

People had started pouring in at the Minto Park at around mid-day. The PTI public meeting venue was almost filled by 6pm – presenting a little bigger crowd than the party had managed on October 30, 2011. A large number of party workers and youth, many of whom were wearing T-shirts bearing PTI monograms and messages, continued waving party flags, raising slogans. Families were also spotted sitting in groups.

Many of the participants also danced in groups on party songs played throughout the day. Singers Salman Ahmad and Ibrarul Haq also kept the audience engaged with their songs.

As the cell phone service was suspended at the venue and adjacent localities, many young boys and girls continued playing video games.

Weather remained pleasant and audience listened to their leaders but it rained heavily when PTI chief started his speech. Though he termed the downpour the advent of tsunami, he was restrained to explain his six promises. The audience stood firm and responded to their leader with loud slogans when Khan asked them whether they were afraid of the rain. At one time, Mr Khan specifically asked them not to move and let the rain fall.

Mr Khan’s speech was dotted with party songs that were played almost after every promise he made.

He continued using religious jargons and said that he had always looked upon the life of Hazrat Muhammad (PBUH), whenever he faced difficulty in his life. He said that he had spent tough 17 years in the field of politics and took many big decisions. He urged the youth to keep struggling, have faith and Allah almighty would help them survive in all situations.

Mr Khan said that when in power he would get the boundary-wall of Governor’s House razed and convert it into a playground, while the building would be converted into a public library.

The PTI chief also sought four assurances from the audience. He said the audience should assure him that they would stand with him in a battle against oppressors. He urged them to speak the truth and become “Tabdeeli Razakars” (volunteers of change) and fight against loot and plunder with enthusiasm and passion of building New Pakistan.

The public meeting participants were all praise for their leader and were in unison to say that they would make a concentrated effort and bring revolution in the country.

Besides those who had come from other parts of Punjab and the country, youth had reached the venue in their private vehicles. The PTI local organisation had also arranged vans on rent to bring people to the venue in large number. Those coming a bit late had to park their vehicles many-a-kilometre away from the venue. A large number of people had also used Metro Bus Service. The buses plying towards Shahdara were jam-packed and became almost empty at Azadi Chowk, the stop in front of the PTI public meeting venue.

The party had installed sound system up to Data Darbar, nearly two kilometres away from the Minto Park.—Mansoor Malik

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Comments are closed.

Comments (24)

Fida Sayani
March 24, 2013 4:03 am
why new Pakistan, why not Jinnah Pakistan.
March 24, 2013 4:43 am
Long live New Pakistan.
Mohammad Farooq
March 24, 2013 4:52 am
InshaAllah, In Naya Pakistan the vulnerable segments of society will be protected from oppression and injustice.
March 24, 2013 5:25 am
Kudos to Imran for bringing hope to the people of Pakistan. Faced with adversity Pakistan needed a leader who has earned his place after 17 long years of learning and sacrifice. God bless Pakistan.
Zeeshan Shamsi
March 24, 2013 7:11 am
If Imran Khan wants to have a wider appeal, should should start using rhetoric that rings more with the populace(Roti Kapra Makan, for eg) and not just his die-harder fans, mostly college grads (Tsunami), themselves a minority in our country. Really, how many in our country can even spell Tsunami, yet alone understand the Japanese derived word made famous by recent disasters? Why associate a campaign with a bad news icon? Tsunami only destroys. Long Live with Pakistan, and all those who love it.
March 24, 2013 8:00 am
Way to go PTI
March 24, 2013 9:03 am
Very impressive show by PTI. If anyone has a far sighted vision, its Imran Khan. Very disappointed at Pakistani Media for not covering the gathering properly.
March 24, 2013 9:56 am
I was there at park as having gone from Rawalpindi. It was a fantastic show but I think Shah Mehmood Qureshi took a lot of time in his speech despite knowing fully well that showers were on their way. That left very little time for Imran and also prevented an orderly closure of the Jalsa
March 24, 2013 1:04 pm
The politics has become profession when people enjoy and collect money for long haul, relations are allowed to plunder the wealth for their families. Imran is the first who is against this systematic plunder of wealth. Every Institution has become earning profession for few individuals. Media too work for those who give them advertisement. The pure desire for serving the nations or poor is missing. Local leaders are not elected since Mafia culture never allow fair hierarchy from top to down the line. Imran has touched .very big issues. Let he deliver what he has said. Give him a chance to deliver.
March 24, 2013 1:59 pm
Imran Khan is the only true leader in Pakistan. I will vote for PTI
Irfan Butt
March 24, 2013 2:10 pm
Bravo PT. Bravo Imran Khan. May Allah bring peace and prosperity to our homeland - Amin!
Agha Ata (USA)
March 24, 2013 2:36 pm
Now . . what next? It is still too early to say anything. One or two more big steps would throw some light on the oncoming events.
Faiza G R Bhatt
March 24, 2013 3:18 pm
politics of issues at best. PTI forever!
March 24, 2013 4:16 pm
Its a status quo Pakistan. We need a Jinnah Pakistan or a Naya Pakista: Non status quo Pakistan. A fully democrated Pakistan with democrated parties/
Faisal Naqvi
March 24, 2013 5:29 pm
I sincerely wish Imran becomes the next prime minister. Not because he is going to be a great leader but only then he will be exposed to the real world. Mr. Khan is so harsh and open when criticizing Zardari and Sharif but is a chicken when it comes to Taliban. Let him become the prime minister and we will witness a confused leader with a flawed ideology. Having written all that I also know that he is not driven by greed. One can be very honest and very wrong at the same time ( that unfortunately the case with Mr. Khan). I am still waiting for Mr. Nawaz Sharif to rally people against drone attacks like he did in order to reinstate chief justice. Imran will be tested the same way. Good luck Mr. Khan.
March 24, 2013 5:37 pm
We all should keep making dua for Imran khan's safety and that his party win in the coming election.Now its time to stand together and fight along with him against corruption
March 24, 2013 7:36 pm
Before the elections, why cant we establish a series of live televised debates between the leaders of the most popular parties? What better way is there for allowing Pakistanis to decide who to vote for? I would love to see Imran Khan, take on Nawaz Sharif, Zardari and the others in such a debate.
Tariq Mehsud
March 24, 2013 9:02 pm
Imran Khan will win these elections Inshallah
March 24, 2013 10:23 pm
or a re-birth of pakistan on the footsteps of what was envisioned by Jnnah and Iqbal.
March 25, 2013 3:44 am
"He continued using religious jargons and said"....... well he said that he always looked upto the example of Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) in hardship; have faith and God would help them. If our liberals cannot even tolerate this much of religious jargon then they better find a suitable place to live. I am no supporter of Imran Khan but this is biased reporting of the event.
March 25, 2013 5:35 am
ONLY Imran Khan the Lion of Pakistan and TRUE and FAITHFUL SON OF THE SOIL is sincere to Pakistan and the people of Pakistan. He is the ONE and ONLY CHOICE to SAVE Pakistan from looters and plunderers of PPP and PML-N and their allies!
Sardar M. Tayyab Haider Khan
March 25, 2013 6:50 am
congratulation for PTI
March 25, 2013 6:54 am
The copycats who call themselves lions, copy every concept, every slogan and every word of PTI. Now they are using the term 'naya Pakistan'. They are not ashamed of being copycats. Now lets see what they bring out in response to 'tabdili razakars'.
Shah Fahad
March 25, 2013 8:56 am
how could you that this report is biased?
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