RESPONDING to recent accusations levelled against caretakers by two major political parties, Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) and Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP), caretaker Prime Minister Anwaarul Haq Kakar said that the “victim card” could serve as “narrative” for any political party.
These comments were made during an exclusive interview on the Geo News programme Jirga on Sunday night.
“Our topmost priority is to conduct elections at the earliest. The caretaker government is committed to enabling the people to choose their representatives by exercising their democratic rights in the upcoming elections scheduled for Feb 8 next year,” Mr Kakar stated in the light of the statements made by PPP and PTI.
“We want to hand over the responsibilities to the [upcoming] elected government,” he added.
Says ‘victim card’ may serve as ‘narrative’ for any political party
In response to a question regarding the accusations made by the two major parties against his government, the premier questioned, “What actions have we taken to create the impression that we harbour bias against any political party?”
He went on to ask, “Have we incarcerated the former prime minister, Imran Khan?”
He said the former prime minister, removed from office in April last year through a no-confidence motion, was detained prior to the establishment of the caretaker government.
The PTI chief was taken into custody from his Zaman Park residence in Lahore immediately after being convicted in the Toshakhana case on Aug 5.
However, Mr Kakar, a former senator and a leader of the Balochistan Awami Party (BAP), was sworn in as the eighth caretaker prime minister on Aug 14.
Mr Kakar emphasised that Mr Khan’s arrest was lawful, and he was currently facing charges in court. He asserted, “It would be impartiality if we would have acquitted him [Khan] of all the charges via a royal decree.”
The caretaker prime minister explained that they were bound by legal constraints and couldn’t take such actions. “Before making allegations, think ten times,” he urged.
“The PTI chairman is secure in jail,” he said, highlighting the government’s legal responsibility to ensure the safety of the incarcerated leader. He dismissed social media reports claiming a threat to
Mr Khan’s life, asserting, “Nobody has personal enmity with the PTI chairman”.
Published in Dawn, November 20th, 2023