Saturday December 02, 2023

Imran seeks 'immediate' inquiry against Bajwa in letter to president

PTI chair states ways in which ex-army chief Gen (retd) Bajwa repeatedly "violated" oath of office

February 16, 2023
A collage of PTI Chairman Imran Khan (left) and former army chief Gen (retd) Qamar Javed Bajwa. — AFP/File
A collage of PTI Chairman Imran Khan (left) and former army chief Gen (retd) Qamar Javed Bajwa. — AFP/File

Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan has requested President Arif Alvi to institute an "immediate inquiry" and action against former army chief General (retd) Qamar Javed Bajwa for allegedly violating his oath of office multiple times, it emerged Thursday.

In a letter dated February 14, the former premier — who now blames Gen (retd) Bajwa for toppling his government in an ouster via a vote of no-confidence last year — has stated ways in which the latter violated his oath and the Constitution. 

"Some very disturbing information has now come into the public domain whereby it is clear that Gen (retd) Bajwa as COAS violated his oath of office repeatedly," Khan stated while referring to a column published in a newspaper earlier this month which attributed startling revelations about PTI's government to the former army chief. 

“He (Bajwa) has admitted to [a] journalist ‘we’ (and it would be critical to ascertain from him who was the ‘we’ in reference to) considered Imran Khan dangerous to the country if he continued to stay in power,” stated the letter shared publicly on the party's official social media channels today.

Khan said that the question that arises is who had given Bajwa the power to decide that an elected prime minister was supposedly a danger to the country.

The PTI chairman noted that the people could only decide who they want to elect as prime minister through elections.

“Taking such a right on himself is in clear violation of his oath as given in the Third Schedule Article 244 of the Constitution,” he alleged.

He also referred to Tarin’s corruption case, about which Bajwa had claimed that the PTI finance minister approached then spymaster General (retd) Faiz Hamid to get the matter "sorted out".

“Regardless of the merits of his claims in this case, he has also admitted he managed to get NAB case against Shaukat Tarin dismissed revealing that NAB was under his control - again a clear violation of the Constitutional oath because the army itself is a department under the Ministry of Defence and civilian official autonomous institutions do not come military control,” Khan wrote.

The former prime minister, while quoting another journalist, said that Bajwa had “tapes of [the] then PM Imran Khan's conversations with him”.

The PTI chief wrote that this is a “serious violation” again of the former army chief’s oath and a “violation” of fundamental human rights.

“The question is why and under what authorisation was Gen Bajwa recording confidential conversations?”

Imran Khan alleged that Bajwa violated his oath when he publicly went against the then government's policy of maintaining neutrality in the Russia-Ukraine war.

“He did this at an international conference in Islamabad on 2 April 2022 - the Islamabad Security Conference. I would like to point out that the govt policy was arrived at after developing a consensus of all stakeholders including MOFA and retired diplomats who had the relevant experience and were area specialists,” he wrote.

“I would also point out that chapter II of the Constitution describes the mandate of the Armed Forces and specifically refers to Articles 243 and 244. Therefore it is your Constitutional duty as President and as Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces to take immediate action and institute an inquiry so as to establish whether such grave violations of the Constitution and oath of Office under the Constitution have taken place.”