Dissidents to face social boycott: PM Imran

Published March 21, 2022
MALAKAND: Prime Minister Imran Khan addresses a public meeting at Dargai on Sunday. Mr Khan claimed that he had been advised by party colleagues to bring the dissidents back into the party fold by offering the same bribe as proffered allegedly by the opposition, but he had rejected the advice.—APP
MALAKAND: Prime Minister Imran Khan addresses a public meeting at Dargai on Sunday. Mr Khan claimed that he had been advised by party colleagues to bring the dissidents back into the party fold by offering the same bribe as proffered allegedly by the opposition, but he had rejected the advice.—APP

MALAKAND: Prime Minister Imran Khan has claimed that he has been advised by party colleagues to bring the ruling Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf dissidents back into the party fold by offering the same bribe as proffered by the opposition, but he rejected the advice telling them that he would rather prefer to lose his government than taking the path of horse-trading.

Addressing a public meeting in the Dargai area of Malakand on Sunday, Prime Minister Khan also criticised several media houses for ‘siding with the dacoits’ and blamed them for ‘selling out to foreign powers’.

PM Khan, in his speech, also recounted all the achievements of his government, including record tax collection, exports and remittances, during the past three and a half months.

He alleged that the dacoits were using public money to buy PTI lawmakers but told the opposition that it was going to lose “this match”. He also vowed that he would never opt for horse-trading with public money, as the opposition did. However, he promised that like a father he would forgive the disgruntled PTI lawmakers, who had been ‘deceived’ by opposition parties to vote for no-trust motion against him, if they repented and returned to the party fold. At the same time, Mr Khan warned other dissatisfied PTI leaders, “Return to the party fold or face social boycott.” He urged the turncoats to think of their children and families, saying that they would lose respect and honour in society. “People will neither trust nor respect you. Masses are aware of whatever is happening in the country. This is the age of social media where it’s difficult to hide anything from them,” he asserted, adding that Changa Manga-like politics was not possible in the digital age.

Imran blames several media houses for siding with dacoits and taking money from foreign powers to topple govt

Talking about the mainstream media, PM Khan said the media had a major role in any democracy. “It is media duty to create awareness. To stand with the good, the biggest responsibility lies with the media. It must raise voice against evil. But I have to say it that unfortunately many media houses are getting money, several of them are receiving money from abroad.

“And I leave it to the Pakistani nation that when you see the [section of] media you will find them standing with the dacoits who are destroying democracy.

“If any foreign power wants to topple the government, how easy it is: just buy the loyalty of 20 hypocrites and the government will fall,” the prime minister said.

PM Khan also warned the media standing with the ‘dacoits’ [opposition], they should understand “the nation is watching you.” At this moment when the nation was on the two extremes, people were also watching which section of the media was standing with the country and its people and which one was standing with the dacoits, he asserted.

Criticising Leader of Opposition in the National Assembly Shehbaz Sharif and other opposition party leaders, Mr Kahn said people could identify the ‘three stooges’ from the opposition who had been facing corruption cases for looting the country for years. He sounded confident the opposition would badly lose the match. He told the public meeting that a decisive moment had arrived in the history of Pakistan. He alleged that the corrupt mafia was offering bribes to the ruling party lawmakers to buy their loyalties with their ill-gotten money.

The judiciary, election commission and the nation were observing the situation, Mr Khan said.

In the UK, he said, the members of parliament never sold their loyalties because they had strong democratic values and political insight. “They can never imagine such cheap tactics in politics,” he added.

The prime minister alleged that bags filled with stacks of money were being given to his party lawmakers at Sindh House, terming the action ‘funeral of democracy’. He appealed to the nation it was “your obligation to stand up and raise your voice against such tactics on part of the opposition parties”.

‘Foreign policy to favour people’

In his speech, PM Khan also lauded India for having an ‘independent’ foreign policy that was favourable to own people. He said he never bowed down before anyone and would not let the nation bow down. He said his foreign policy would also favour the people of Pakistan.

He maintained that he had said no to the European Union envoys who sought Pakistan support against Russia in the Ukraine conflict, because they broke protocol by making the joint statement public. Pakistan would have gained nothing by complying with the EU’s request, he said, adding that Pakistan being an independent country would not become part of any bloc.

He said Pakistan could not make progress if it remained slave to the world superpowers. He said the nation would not prosper until it stood on its own feet. Only hypocrites would never stand by the people, because they ‘worship money’, he remarked.

Published in Dawn, March 21st, 2022

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