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Friday July 12, 2024

Military slams Imran Khan over ‘fabricated allegations’ against senior army officer

ISPR says PTI chief "levelled highly irresponsible allegations without any evidence"

By Zarmeen Zehra
May 08, 2023
The chairman of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf party, Imran Khan.— @PTIofficial
The chairman of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf party, Imran Khan.— @PTIofficial

RAWALPINDI: The chief military spokesperson has slammed Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan for his “irresponsible and baseless allegations” against a serving senior military officer.

“Chairman PTI has levelled highly irresponsible and baseless allegations against a serving senior military officer without any evidence,” Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) Director-General Major General Ahmed Sharif Chaudhry said in a statement on Monday.

The PTI chief has claimed that a senior military officer, Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif, and Interior Minister Rana Sanaullah were behind his assassination attempt on November 3, 2022, but provided no evidence to authorities so far, while all the people accused have rejected the allegations.

“These fabricated and malicious allegations are extremely unfortunate, deplorable and unacceptable,” the military’s spokesperson said.

Senior analyst Shahzeb Khanzada said although what happened with the deposed prime minister in November was a tragedy, his track record forces one to believe that he might be targeting people to bolster his political support, with anchorperson Muneeb Farooq backing his analysis.

Khan has also blamed former army chief General (retd) Qamar Javed Bajwa for his government’s ouster in April last year, but has still not been able to prove it.

The army’s spokesperson, in the statement, also said that a pattern has been witnessed over the last year, wherein, the army personnel are targeted for one’s political motives.

“This has been a consistent pattern for [the] last one year wherein military and intelligence agencies officials are targeted with insinuations and sensational propaganda for the furtherance of political objectives.”

The ISPR DG added that politicos should refrain from making baseless allegations and warned that if such a trend were to continue, the army had the right to take legal action.

“We ask the political leader concerned to make recourse to legal avenues and stop making false allegations. The institution reserves the right to take legal course of action against patently false and malafide statements and propaganda.”

'Are military officers are above the law?'

Before the army's statement, Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif had condemned the PTI chief's tirade against the senior military officer. At this, Khan slammed the premier, asking whether "[military] officers were above the law?"

"As someone who has suffered 2 assassination attempts on his life in last few months, can I dare to ask SS the following Qs: Have I, a citizen, the right to nominate those I feel were responsible for assassination attacks on me? Why was I denied my legal & Constitutional right to register an FIR?"

"Does SS tweet mean mly officers are above the law or that they cannot commit a crime?" he wondered. The PTI chief further asked that if a person is being blamed for a crime, how can it be perceived that an entire institution is being maligned?

"Who was so powerful as to sabotage Wazirabad JIT while PTI govt was in power in Punjab?"

Khan, without naming anyone, said that when PM Shehbaz can truthfully answer all his questions, it would point to point to one powerful man and his accomplices "all being above the law".

"Then it is time for us to officially declare that in Pakistan there is only law of the jungle where Might is Right."