Tehreek-i-Insaf stages rallies against US, dissident lawmakers

Published April 2, 2022
PTI MPA Fazal Elahi and workers stage an anti-US rally outside Peshawar Press Club on Friday. — White Star
PTI MPA Fazal Elahi and workers stage an anti-US rally outside Peshawar Press Club on Friday. — White Star

PESHAWAR: Leaders and workers of the ruling Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) took to the streets in different parts of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa on Friday against the US over ‘threat’ to Prime Minister Imran Khan as well as against dissident MNAs.

They burnt the US flag and effigy of US President Joe Biden.

The Peshawar protest was led by provincial ministers.

The charged protesters from different parts of the capital city gathered outside the press club building and shouted slogans against the US, dissident PTI MNAs and opposition for what they insisted working to oust the Imran Khan government.

Besides banners and placards, they also carried lotas (ewers) calling the disgruntled party lawmakers turncoats. They also tossed lotas in the air.

The protesters also shouted slogans against leader of the opposition Jamiat Ulema-i-Islam-Fazl Maulana Fazlur Rehman as well as dissident PTI MNAs, including Noor Alam Khan of Peshawar, and declared them traitors.

Leaders say ruling party’s workers will ‘stop traitors’ from voting against PM

The rallies were taken out on the ‘orders’ of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Chief Minister Mahmood Khan.

In a leaked audio clip, the chief minister could be heard directing his ministers to take to the streets after Friday prayers to protest against 18 dissident PTI MNAs and the US, and celebrate the ruling party’s victory in the second phase of local body elections in the province.

He insisted that Prime Minister Imran Khan had ordered him to take out rallies.

“PM has talked to me over the phone,” he was heard in the audio clip as saying.

PTI MPA from Peshawar Haji Fazal Elahi showed up in the rally donning a shroud.

Ministers Taimur Saleem Jhagra, Shah Mohammad Wazir, Ishtiaq Urmur and Kamran Khan Bangash and MPAs also attended the rally.

The speakers said that they believed in the Almighty Allah and not US president Joe Biden. They called for the registration of cases against ‘traitors’ accusing them of acting on the directions of the US.

The speakers said the street protests were staged against the ‘corrupt mafia’.

They announced that the PTI workers would go to Islamabad to ‘stop traitors’ from voting against the prime minister in the National Assembly.

In Bannu, the PTI activists staged a rally outside the press club building against opposition parties.

Led by MPA Pakhtoonyar Khan, former MPA Malik Adnan Khan and tehsil council chairman Kakki Junaid Rashid Khan, the protesters also set fire to a banner carrying pictures of opposition leaders.

The speakers said the PTI’s victory in the second phase of local body elections in the province had proved its popularity.

They said the country was fortunate to have a brave leader like Imran Khan.

The speakers said the PTI government introduced reforms in all fields and launched the Sehat Insaf Card, Ehsaas Kifalat and other schemes to the relief of the common man.

They declared the PTI dissident MNAs traitors and said those lawmakers had won the 2018 elections as the PTI nominees but switched loyalty to the opposition for money.

The speakers alleged that the opposition leaders used the money they looted during their governments, for horse-trading.

They asked dissidents to review their decision to vote against Prime Minister Imran Khan during the opposition’s no-confidence motion in the National Assembly.

In Mardan, too, the PTI activists staged a protest rally against the party’s dissident MNAs.

Food, science and information technology minister Mohammad Atif Khan led protesters.

The ruling party’s lawmakers from the district, including Zahir Shah Toru, Tufail Anjum and others, also attended the rally.

Mr Atif Khan demanded termination of the assembly membership of the dissident lawmakers.

The other speakers asked the US to stop intervention in Pakistan’s political affairs.

Published in Dawn, April 2nd, 2022

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