LAHORE: Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) leader Fawad Chaudhry on Wednesday reiterated his party’s claims that the Nov 3 attack on former prime minister Imran Khan was a part of a “well-coordinated” plan executed by at least three shooters to eliminate the PTI chief.
The PTI leader made these claims in light of “fresh evidence” purportedly provided in the Joint Investigation Team (JIT) report — “now a part of the court record”.
Addressing a press conference, the PTI leader, flanked by Punjab CM’s information aide Omar Sarfraz Cheema, claimed that the JIT report “has proved PTI’s claims” about the attack on the former PM.
The former information minister also shared a video of the assassination attempt to “prove that the PTI chief came under attack from three different sides”. “Cartridges of [bullets from] three different weapons have been recovered from the scene of the crime. [At least] 14 bullets have been recovered from the ground and nine from the adjoining buildings,” he claimed, adding that out of the three assassins, one suspect was arrested while two were still at large.
The forensic test of Mr Khan’s guards’ weapons established that none of them fired even a single shot, he claimed and added that PTI worker Moazzam was killed by a bullet aimed at the detained shooter, Naveed.
PTI leader claims 23 bullet casings recovered from crime scene, none of them fired by ex-PM’s guards
“The assassin had to be killed on the spot but ill-fated Moazzam came in the way,” the former minister said, comparing the attack on Imran Khan with the assassination of ex-PM Liaquat Ali Khan whose shooter was killed on the spot.
During the presser, Mr Chaudhry said that the district police officer (DPO) did not join the investigation nor handed over his cell phone for the forensic audit. The police chief was approached to get access to the DPO’s cell phone, but he also refused.
When reminded that Imran Khan himself did not join the investigation, he said that it was because of his principled stance that the FIR in the case did not include the suspects he had nominated.
Four days after the attack, an FIR was lodged; instead of nominating the suspects named by the victim, a third party lodged the case, he added.
“The people Imran Khan named are still occupying their posts and influencing and blocking the JIT investigations,” Fawad Chaudhry alleged.
The PTI leader said as per the polygraph test conducted by the JIT, the shooter responded to most questions with lies. He claimed that the test ‘proved’ that Naveed was a trained assassin and he was not a “lone wolf”.
At the time of the attack, Fawad Chaudhry said, the government tried to prove it a case of “religious fanatic attacking Imran Khan on the spur of the moment”.
“Even before Imran Khan reached the hospital, a video of the detained suspect was released, claiming he was moved by religious passion,” he said, adding that shortly after another video shot at the Counter Terrorism Department (CTD) office was released.
“Now, the entire CTD office has been redone to alter the site and evidence,” Mr Chaudhry claimed, adding that all of this was being done to confuse the investigators.
“Now, the court has ordered everyone to cooperate with the JIT, or the investigation team can itself call the reluctant attendees to join the probe,” he said, hoping the truth would soon be unearthed.
Published in Dawn, January 5th, 2023