Former Punjab chief minister Usman Buzdar bid adieu to politics on Friday adding on the to number of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) wickets that have tumbled since May 9 — after clashes erupted across the country triggered by the arrest of party chief Imran Khan.
Buzdar — while addressing a press conference — said: "First of all, I condemn the May 9 incidents. The military installations which were targeted were properties of the state of Pakistan and I believe we should avoid such incidents."
Reiterating his support for the armed forces, the former chief minister — whose term was cut short in March 2022 — said that he had always stood with the armed forces of Pakistan and will continue to do so.
"I have always committed to politics of nobility [...] but due to the current circumstances, I have decided to quit politics," the former chief minister, once considered to be close to PTI chairman, said.
He called on all stakeholders to reach a consensus and asked the authorities to release all those in custody who were innocent.
Khan’s party has been feeling the heat of the state’s might after his party workers burnt and smashed military installations, including the General Headquarters in Rawalpindi, after his arrest on May 9 — a day the army dubbed as “Black Day”.
Several party leaders and thousands of workers have been rounded up in connection with the violent protests and the army has insisted that the people involved in attacks on military installations be tried under the Pakistan Army Act and the Official Secrets Act.
A close aide of Khan, Asad Umar, has relinquished his posts of secretary general and core committee member, citing the ongoing situation.
Several party leaders and lawmakers — including Fawad Chaudhry, Shireen Mazari, Aamir Mehmood Kiani, Malik Amin Aslam, Mahmood Moulvi, Aftab Siddiqui, Fayyazul Hassan Chohan among others — have publicly denounced the attacks on the state installations and announced leaving the former ruling party since the May 9 vandalism.
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