Act while there is still time, Imran warns institutions

Published July 3, 2022
ISLAMABAD: Supporters of the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf attend the rally in Parade Ground along with their children, on Saturday night.—Twitter /PTISPOfficial
ISLAMABAD: Supporters of the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf attend the rally in Parade Ground along with their children, on Saturday night.—Twitter /PTISPOfficial

• PTI chief asks judges why no suo motu action taken against ‘crooks’ of incumbent govt
• Claims ‘umpires’ are with govt in upcoming Punjab by-polls; vows to sweep elections against all odds

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan on Saturday urged the ‘institutions’ to act against the incumbent government, before the “game got out of hand”.

Addressing a gathering at Islamabad’s Parade Ground, convened as a protest against spiralling inflation, the former prime minister warned the powers-that-be that there was still time to act against the “imported regime” and avoid the rage of the masses who had gathered at the venue to record their “peaceful protest” and send a message to the institutions.

The PTI chief also took a potshot at the judiciary for not taking a “suo moto action” against the incumbent rulers. According to the former PM, the judiciary will be answerable to Allah for their failure to act when the ‘crooks’ were giving themselves an ‘NRO’ by amending the NAB law.

He asked why the “institutions” allowed the coalition government, led by the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N), to be imposed on the people of Pakistan. “It is not too late as you still have the time to save Pakistan from these thieves,” he warned.

In an allusion to his party’s drive against corruption, Mr Khan asked whether the responsibility to stand against corruption was his alone. “Do the institutions not own Pakistan,” he asked, urging them to intervene over the alleged corruption of the incumbent rulers.

According to the PTI chief, Allah would ask the neutrals – who hold de-facto power in Pakistan – why they did not stop the ‘crooks’ from coming into power.

“Allah will ask me what I did with the popularity and fame he had bestowed upon me. Allah will ask judges that He had given them a respectable status in the society to establish justice on Earth. Did you provide [people] justice or not? Did you protect the weak from the powerful? Did you bring the powerful within the ambit of the law?”

He then quoted the Holy Prophet (peace be upon him) as saying that 1,500 years ago, nations where the powerful managed to evade justice were destroyed. Mr Khan then questioned whether “our judiciary” would not be asked to account for this by the creator.

“So, will Allah not ask my judiciary that ‘[poor] people are languishing in jails for petty crimes but those who looted this country, how could you allow those people take an NRO-2. Weren’t you supposed to take suo moto action [against the government],” the PTI chief said while addressing the crowd.

In a message to his political rivals, Mr Khan said he would continue to live in Pakistan and die here. He said he had never thought of getting nationality of any other country.

“I have never thought of living abroad. Nawaz Sharif went out of Pakistan every time after losing power. The same is the case with Asif Zardari. Their assets are abroad so they don’t care about the devaluation of rupee as their wealth [that is in dollars] increases [with devaluation],” he alleged.

Speaking about the events that transpired on May 25, Mr Khan said he decided against a sit-in in Islamabad on May 26 because he did not want to create “anarchy” in the country. The PTI chief said there was anger against the police and the Rangers after the crackdown on PTI supporters and things would have taken a dangerous turn. He said a “sea of people” would have descended on Islamabad on May 25 had the government not used the state apparatus to stop people from joining the PTI’s Azadi March.

‘Umpires are with govt’

Mr Khan also alleged that the by-elections in Punjab to be held on July 17 will not be transparent as he accused the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) of being “biased”. He added that even though the ‘umpires’ were not neutral in these elections he would be able to clinch victory because people were against the government.

During the gathering, the PTI chief also played videos of Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif and Minister of Defence Khawaja Asif to mock them. He also played speeches of Mr Zardari and Mr Sharif lashing out at each other.

Similarly, he played videos of Nawaz Sharif and Ahsan Iqbal regarding their comments about corruption to mock them.

While speaking about the assault on a senior journalist, the former prime minister said that although Ayaz Amir criticised him he kept respecting him as he was sincere. He said that it was impossible to silence people through such tactics.

As in the past, a number of times some inappropriate incidents were reported, Mr Khan earlier advised workers and supporters to “treat women [present at the rally] as sisters”.

Published in Dawn, July 3rd, 2022

Opinion

Editorial

No end to hostility
Updated 17 Aug, 2022

No end to hostility

It is time for all parties to rise above petty tactics and hostilities for political gains and pull country back from brink.
Deadly accidents
17 Aug, 2022

Deadly accidents

TWO horrific accidents on Tuesday, which resulted in high death tolls, illustrate the dangers people face while ...
New banknote
17 Aug, 2022

New banknote

PAKISTAN has a new currency note to mark the diamond jubilee of independence. The 75-rupee banknote, issued by the...
Shared goals
Updated 16 Aug, 2022

Shared goals

It is high time that all parties realise that negotiation on the economy does not need to be held hostage to political rivalries.
Making amends?
16 Aug, 2022

Making amends?

WHERE relations with the US are concerned, there has been a distinct shift in Imran Khan’s tone. While the PTI...
Hazardous celebration
16 Aug, 2022

Hazardous celebration

CAN celebratory actions that often result in death or lifelong injuries really be described as such? Be it Eid, New...