PTI leader asks why govt does not remember violence of May 12, Dec 27

By Our Correspondent
May 30, 2024
Supporters of the PTI party shout slogans and protest to demand the release of Pakistan’s jailed former prime minister Imran Khan, in Karachi on January 28, 2024. — AFP

The Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf’s (PTI) symbolic hunger strike camp outside the Karachi Press Club demanding the release of the party founder and former prime minister Imran Khan entered its third day on Wednesday.


Karachi PTI President Raja Azhar and General Secretary Arsalan Khalid along with other leaders of the party, including Dr Masroor Sial, Rashid Abbasi, Advocate Khalid Mahmood, Advocate Ashraf Samoon, Advocate Zahoor Mehsud and Dawa Khan, along with party workers participated in the protest.

Speaking at the hunger strike camp, Azhar said they wanted immediate release of Khan from jail and restoration of the 2024 general elections results in accordance with the results of Form 45.

He criticised the police action against the party’s hunger strike on its first day when police allegedly raided their camp and arrested several workers. He said the press club should have been a safe space for their protest.

The city president of the PTI announced that the protest, which had begun in Karachi, would be spread across Sindh, Punjab, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and the entire country until the PTI founder was released and the party’s ‘stolen’ mandate was returned.

He accused the current government of ruining the economy and selling off national institutions, asserting that the country had seen no improvement since the ‘corrupt’ administration took power.

The international community had been witnessing the Pakistani government’s violence against the citizens of the country, Azhar maintained. “Corrupt politicians like Nawaz Sharif and Asif Zardari have led the country to downfall,” he commented.

He called the May 9, 2023 incident a premeditated conspiracy, alleging that the government had not yet proved the PTI’s involvement in the riots against the military installations. He demanded the release of videos that implicated those responsible and appropriate punishment for the perpetrators. He questioned the selective memory of the authorities regarding violent incidents, arguing that the bloodshed of May 12, 2007 and the destruction following the assassination of Pakistan Peoples Party leader and the first and only woman prime minister of the country, Benazir Bhutto, on December 27 the same year had been overlooked.