Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf Chairman Imran Khan has claimed that several institutions, including elements from the army, helped the PML-N win the 2013 general elections.
The PTI chief, during an 'ice-breaker' interview to Geo News' senior journalist Hamid Mir, said that the ruling party and Nawaz Sharif had received more help than anyone else from the press, the judiciary and even the army in years past.
Khan in particular stressed that Sharif and his party were helped tremendously by elements from the armed forces in Punjab during the 2013 general elections.
"The army helped him in the 2013 elections," he claimed. "What was said during the judicial commission [inquiry] in the Supreme Court? It was said that the returning officers in Punjab were surrounded by the army, and inside that security [cordon] they were casting fake votes.
"The candidates were not allowed to witness [the] consolidation [process]. So who had asked the army to surround them like that? Have you ever heard that candidates are barred from the consolidation?
"I don't know if Sharif was helped by the institution or by individuals, but what I do know is that in Punjab, Brig Muzaffar Ali Ranjha, who was later rewarded with an anti-corruption post, helped them [the PML-N]. Of that there is no doubt.
"Why was it called the RO's election? That's because when it was time to tabulate results, no one was allowed to go there. Who stopped the candidates? The army [did]."
Khan accused Sharif of always trying to keep national institutions on his side, pointing out that since that this was now no longer the case, the former PM is now "upset".
"Nawaz Sharif today is not actually complaining that the army is against him — he is in fact asking why isn't the army with him? He always plays his matches with his own umpires.
"From Gymkhana, to General Zia [ul Haq], to the 1990 elections, to the 1996 elections, and then 2013 — both the judiciary and the army used to support him [Nawaz]. Today, his problem is that both these institutions have become neutral."