ISLAMABAD: PTI Chairman and former prime minister Imran Khan Wednesday hinted at a ‘terrible conspiracy’ to show as if his party and the army were each other’s rivals. In a news conference on video-link from his Banigala residence, Imran said he was under 18 when he visited the-then East Pakistan to play a match in March 1970 and stayed there with his cousin Brigadier Shafique to find out how much hatred had spread between the largest party there and the army. “After that, we all know our country disintegrated. Today, the same effort is being made,” he cautioned, referring to the ruling alliance.
Imran said the PTI was a federal level party, having the biggest vote bank in all the four provinces. He said a conspiracy was being hatched by ‘Mir Jafars and Mir Sadiqs’ to crush his party. “It’s being done by planning. When our government was in power, the first reaction that came from India was that Imran Khan had been brought into power by the army and that he was a puppet. When our government was ousted, there were celebrations in India and Israel. The West also did not raise the issue of regime change,” said the PTI chief.
Imran said India was constantly pained that his government and the army were on the same page. He then pointed out how the PTI activists exposed the ‘Disinformation Lab’ of the European Union that had about 800 fake sites. These websites, he continued, were constantly propagating against Pakistan and it included many journalists of Pakistan. “Now they are seen with the present government. They used to attack me and the Pakistan Army,” he claimed.
Imran said when the attacks took place in Mumbai, Asif Zardari suggested that DG ISI should be sent to Mumbai. “The same Zardari sent a message to the Americans through Hussain Haqqani to save him from the army while, on the other hand, in an interview after the Mumbai attacks, Nawaz said the accused involved in the attacks was from Pakistan. There was a huge campaign in which the ISI and Pakistan Army were targeted,” he said.
Imran said Dawn Leaks revealed that Nawaz Sharif and his government had said that the ISI and Pakistan Army were involved in terrorism that was taking place against India. He said Narendra Modi used to repeatedly call Pakistan’s former commander General Raheel Sharif the leader of terrorists, and Nawaz Sharif invited the same Narendra Modi to a marriage in Lahore.
Imran said Indian journalist Barkha Dutt wrote in her book that Nawaz Sharif was secretly meeting Narendra Modi, and asking him to save him from the army.
“These people are telling us today that we are traitors. Billions of dollars of these people are lying outside. Their stories of corruption have also been written in books abroad. Their theft is also mentioned in documentary. Today, it is being said that we are against the army, while these people who have come into power and have become patriotic Pakistanis are calling us traitors,” he regretted.
Explaining how his party was being targeted, he said, “The kind of cruelty unleashed on us on May 25 was unprecedented. Our houses were raided at midnight in total disregard for privacy. They thought they will crush the PTI, thinking that it comprised ‘mummy, daddy’ type people.”
However, he said people came out in support of the party. He said in the Punjab by-elections, the Election Commission used every tactic to defeat the PTI and all the parties fought the election together but they were wiped out from Punjab. Imran said now these people were trying to somehow start a war between the PTI and the army.
He claimed that the PTI only thought of Pakistan. “We have the street power; we can shut down the whole of Pakistan, but the economic conditions of our country are such that we should worry about the country, so we also protest peacefully”. The second thing, he said, was that they had made a complete plan to break the PTI and for this purpose, the Election Commission had given a decision in the foreign funding case.
“There is nothing in this case. They are just saying that when Pakistanis send the money from abroad, it is foreign funding. For the first time in the history of Pakistan, a party has done regular fundraising. Such parties whose heads people consider corrupt can never raise funds.”
“Our party has given the names of 40,000 donors in 2012. The party raised funds and had all the audit reports and gave everything to the Election Commission,” he said. Imran contended that he wanted audit of fundraising of all political parties together because he knew how the PTI had collected money and maintained books, while the PPP and PMLN had nothing.
“They do not even have any audit report. They have written such false things that the day it is truly investigated in court, I challenge it will be proved that only one party had collected money in this country in true sense,” Imran claimed.
He said the Election Commission under a conspiracy was trying to ban his party because it could no longer be defeated in the elections. “They took the name of Arif Naqvi. He was the rising star of Pakistan. He was going up fast. We did not privatise K-Electric; it was given to Arif Naqvi in the governments of these two parties.”
Imran said his opponents wanted his technical knock-out in Toshakhana and foreign funding cases because they knew they would lose in the elections against him. For character-assassination, the PTI chairman said he knew which media houses will fully cooperate with them.
“This is part of the plan that they have taken action against the ‘ARY’. It’s part of the same plan that any channel that takes my stand must be shut down.”
He said those who toppled the PTI government did not want a strong Pakistan. “They want Pakistan to remain on the life support machine and keep giving it a little money. I do not know whether Pakistan’s land was used or not, but foreign newspapers are saying that there is a deal with regard to the drone attack in Afghanistan, using our airspace.”
The PTI chairman said they were activities of the banned Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and they were carrying out attacks. “PTI MPAs are telling that they are getting threats. There is a government in the KP that wants an independent Pakistan but it is being targeted.”
Imran said if what Dr. Shahbaz Gill said was against the law, then it was very easy, as the Constitution of Pakistan speaks of a procedure to charge him. “Give him an opportunity to go to the court and present his explanation. We are more concerned about the country and we want the army to be a strong institution,” he said.
During his speech, some related video clips of Nawaz Sharif, Maryam Nawaz, Asif Zardari, Fazlur Rehman and other leaders were shown, criticising the establishment. Imran questioned why legal action was not taken against them.