PTI shielded country from global price hike: Imran

Published June 19, 2022
In this file photo, PTI Chairman Imran Khan addresses the party's National Council meeting in Islamabad. — DawnNewsTV/File
In this file photo, PTI Chairman Imran Khan addresses the party's National Council meeting in Islamabad. — DawnNewsTV/File

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) chairman and former prime minister Imran Khan on Saturday said his government had served as a shield against international price hike and protected people from its effects.

“I had warned that the economy would suffer badly and go out of control if any attempt was made to topple the PTI government,” Mr Khan said while presiding over a meeting of the party spokespersons.

The meeting discussed issues related to economy and difficulties being faced by citizens due to rising inflation.

The former prime minister announced that the PTI would hold countrywide protests against price hike and continuous increase in the cost of petroleum products, electricity and gas on Sunday (today).

Calls for nationwide protests today; former PM to announce future line of action

“Looters have increased prices just to fill their pockets and have left people to suffer. Those who had made properties abroad are not concerned about the citizens and their future,” Mr Khan said.

He said during the last two months it had become evident how the conspiracy was hatched against Pakistan and who were the characters behind it.

“Those who had come into power were not prepared and now institutions were on the verge of collapse,” he added.

Meanwhile, participants in the meeting said friendly countries as well as the International Monetary Fund (IMF) gave no value to the current setup because they knew that it did not enjoy public support and credibility.

They condemned the government’s tactics to curb freedom of expression, especially harassment of citizens on social media.

They also showed concern over the lacklustre response of the public in the recently-held by-poll in Karachi and the failure of the Election Commission of Pakistan to hold free, fair and peaceful election.

The meeting was perturbed over the government’s decision to make a whopping Rs21 billion cut in the budget of the tribal districts of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa as well as at reports that five million people from these areas had been deprived of health cards provided by the PTI.

The participants warned that any attempt to roll back the integration of the erstwhile Federally Administered Tribal Areas (Fata) would be resisted.

Protest against price hike

Imran Khan urged the masses to come out of their houses and participate in the anti-inflation protests and decide the future course of action together.

The protests will be held at 9pm and the PTI chairman will address the protesters as well as the nation at around 10pm during which he will announce the next line of action.

The former prime minister came down hard on the present government, alleging that crooks and looters had nothing to do with public welfare.

“They had mortgaged the country to fill their coffers,” he added.

On the other hand, PTI’s senior vice president Fawad Chaudhry, in a video message, asked people to participate in the demonstrations.

“In Multan, the protest will be held at Chowk Shah Abbas, whereas in Karachi it will be staged at Shahrah-i-Qaideen, Liberty Chowk in Lahore, Ghanta Ghar in Faisalabad and at Commercial Market in Rawalpindi,” Mr Chaudhry said, adding that protests would also be held at Peshawar’s Hashtnagri Gate and Islamabad’s F-9 Park.

Published in Dawn, June 19th, 2022

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