'My sons were quite worried': Imran reveals the trauma his family braved after he was shot

Published November 10, 2022
PTI Chairman Imran Khan in an interview with British TV presenter Piers Morgan.  — Screengrab via Piers Morgan/YouTube
PTI Chairman Imran Khan in an interview with British TV presenter Piers Morgan. — Screengrab via Piers Morgan/YouTube

The assassination attempt on Imran Khan left the entire nation and the world reeling, but in a recent interview, the cricketer-turned-politician has shed rare light on the traumatic experience his family, especially his sons living in the UK, went through following the gun attack on him.

In a wide-ranging interview with British television presenter Piers Morgan, Imran talked about the elements allegedly involved in the assassination attempt, the personal cost he and his family incurred in the wake of the attack as well as his take on Pakistan’s relationship with the US and his views of Rishi Sunak becoming the British prime minister.

Here are four talking points from the interview:

‘My sons were quite worried’

Imran spoke about the shock his sons, from ex-wife Jemima Goldsmith, felt after learning about the assassination attempt.

“The moment I reached the hospital, after two hours, I spoke to my sons and of course I spoke to my wife who was quite relieved but my boys were quite worried and I hope to see them soon.”

Imran disclosed that his eldest son (Suleman) always differed with his decision to join politics. “He was quite worried when I was shot,” he said.

The ex-PM also played down the threats to his life, saying “we don’t have any control on our life, it’s all in Almighty’s hands”.

‘They will target me again’

Imran said that the gun attack on him was “actually an attempt to permanently silence” him for “exposing the elite capture” who were strongly opposed to an “outsider” aiming to bring about a change in the current political system.

“These powerful people will try to target me again because they have a fear that my party will sweep the next elections,” he told the interviewer.

“They will try again, hence I have enhanced my security at home.”

Imran insisted that rule of law is something that is the difference between a civilised society and a banana republic. “One thing that is keeping us back is we do not have justice in Pakistan.”

Imran once again lamented that he could not get a case registered against three “important people,” following the armed attack on him, saying “one of the nominees in our complaint was an intelligence officer”.

“Imagine what a common man goes through in this country. When he comes against the powerful, he is helpless.”

When asked who he could trust in the system when he was cynical about the ruling elite of the country, Imran responded “it’s the chief justice of Pakistan” as he was the one who could hold a fair and impartial inquiry into the attack.

Imran alleged he was attacked by two shooters, underlining that “the second one is still at large.”

“When you are tackling mafias, you always expect your life to be in danger. I took the decision to fight for justice,” he added.

The former premier also acknowledged the sacrifice rendered by a couple of his party supporters to protect him from the gunman as one of them lost his life while battling the attacker.

“It was disheartening to see the man losing his life who was there with his family. But we have decided to take care of the children [of Moazzam Gondal] for the rest of their lives.”

‘Who would not want good ties with US?’

The PTI chief said his remarks about the significance of Pakistan’s ties with the United States had always been clear.

“It’s a superpower,” Imran said in response to a question. He underlined that it was unthinkable that one would not want to have good ties with the US.

“I have only one issue. Pakistan-US relationships have been like a transactional master-slave relationship. We degrade ourselves, I think we allow ourselves to be used like a tissue paper.”

The ex-PM said he wanted a relationship with the US like India has with America.

Imran surprised at Britain electing Indian-origin man as PM

Commenting on the election of Rishi Sunak as the British Prime Minister, Imran said he was surprised at the election of Sunak — a “non-white” premier as pointed out by Morgan.

“I must confess that I never thought that a day would come that Britain would be ready for an Indian-origin cricketer,” Imran said.

He divulged that he had also faced racism in county cricket.

Morgan also asked Imran to share his take if England make it to the final of the T20 World Cup where they would battle Pakistan for the coveted T20 title.

The ex-cricketer heaped praise on Pakistan skipper Babar Azam.

“I watched him play twice and I immediately asked the head of the cricket board to make him the captain, because he is an exceptional player.”

“The team looks good and we might win the final,” Imran said.

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