LAHORE/ ISLAMABAD: Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan Saturday announced he would reach Rawalpindi on November 26, and called upon all his party workers and Pakistanis to reach there, as he would announce the next plan of action against the coalition government.
In a slip of tongue, Imran Khan first appealed to people to reach Islamabad, and then immediately corrected himself saying that people should reach Rawalpindi on November 26.
Addressing the participants in the long march through video-link, he said those who tried to kill him were still sitting there, while 23 FIRs had been registered against him and his party leaders. He said they were being treated as if they were traitors, and such atrocities had been committed against them as if they were not Pakistanis.
The PTI chairman said the nation could not afford staying neutral at the current juncture. “If you remain neutral today, then your children and coming generations will regret that you sat in homes when you should have struggled against injustice,” added former premier.
Reiterating his stance on ‘slavery’, the PTI chief said national decision should be taken by the nation, adding that country should not become slave to superpowers.
“Pakistan was not established for people seeking help from others,” he said adding that his party wanted an independent country. He lamented that he had to cite India’s example time and again, that although they got independence along with Pakistan, they had been pursuing an exemplary foreign policy.
Imran Khan said, “The US was upset with India for importing oil from Russia, but because of India’s firm stance in the interest of its people, the matter was resolved.” He regretted that the incumbent coalition government burdened masses by not buying oil from Russia for fear of their ‘master’. He regretted that despite being a former prime minister, he could not get registered an FIR about an assassination attempt on him. He said “we know that there were two killers, and the bullets came from the front.” The accused was taught like a parrot that he was alone so that there would be no doubt and the second man could not be traced. Imran ‘regretfully’ said he was ‘hopeless’ about getting justice from courts in Pakistan. “I will file lawsuits in the US and other countries against the allegations levelled against me regarding the Toshakhana watch,” he said, adding that in Pakistan there is no check and balance. He said the PTI’s struggle to ensure rule of law in the country would continue.
Imran Khan asked the establishment to highlight only one positive thing that happened during seven months of the incumbent government. “What was the urgency that these thieves were imposed on us? Tell one thing that they did in the seven months which was positive for Pakistan,” Khan asked. He claimed that neither people at home nor living abroad had confidence in the incumbent government.
“The establishment should tell what happened in the seven months since the change of government,” Khan questioned. He added that the current rulers’ track record was in front of the nation for the last 30 years, adding that the establishment had also labelled them as corrupt.
The PTI chief said the establishment might have not been part of the government change conspiracy, but they could have thwarted the plot and stopped them [PDM member parties] from coming to power. “Powerful quarters have a responsibility and the only way out of this quicksand is free and fair elections,” he added. Imran Khan also berated Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari, saying that he had no “political future”.
“He still can’t speak Urdu properly and people can’t understand him. I predict that most of his life will be spent on finding where his father [PPP Co-Chairman Asif Ali Zardari] had stashed money from corruption,” Khan said addressing the Haqeeqi Azadi marchers.
Separately, PTI senior leader Chaudhry Fawad Hussain announced on Saturday that participants of Haqeeqi Azadi March, moving towards Islamabad in two rallies, would meet at Rawat on Saturday and then proceed towards Rawalpindi. In a tweet, he appreciated party leaders Shah Mehmood Qureshi and Asad Umar for leading two rallies in a successful manner. Fawad said the last leg of the march had started and the participants would be addressed by party chairman Imran Khan in Rawalpindi.
Another party leader Babar Awan said in a tweet that the long march would reach Rawalpindi on Nov 26. Imran Khan would address a mammoth ‘awami kutchehry’ [public court] and the ‘imported’ government would be held answerable for the destruction brought on the country by it in last seven months.
On the other hand, the PTI was given a no-objection certificate (NOC) by the Islamabad administration for holding a rally in the federal capital with 35 conditions.
State news agency APP reported that the PTI had been given the permission to hold a peaceful rally on an application submitted by party leader Ali Nawaz Awan.
An agreement between the PTI and the Islamabad administration was reached in which 35 conditions were presented. The Islamabad deputy commissioner issued the NOC for holding a rally from Koral Chowk to Chak Beili Rawat. He cautioned the PTI that their rally was not allowed to alter the route fixed already. Any deviation from the rally route would ultimately lead to cancellation of the NOC, the DC warned. The rally participants would remain peaceful, he added.
In a tweet, the capital police said Section 144 would remain in place in areas other than the route permitted for the march. Under the conditions, participants won’t be allowed to block any road, vandalise public property, or raise anti-state slogans.
Police warned of action if any of the rally participants were spotted carrying arms or violating the prescribed code.
A traffic plan would be also issued to ensure smooth flow of traffic.
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The reference was filed by the Election Commission of Pakistan in November