ISLAMABAD: Defence Minister Khawaja Asif has finally named former DG ISI General Zaheerul Islam for his alleged role in destabilising the Nawaz Sharif government during last year’s PAT-PTI sit-ins.
He said General Zaheer had pushed the “London Plan” conspiracy against the government.What has so far been discussed in closed door meetings of the rulers has been finally made public by the defence minister. Khawaja Asif said in a private TV interview that the 2014 London Plan against the Nawaz Sharif government was the collective work of two successive ISI Chiefs - Lieutenant General (R) Shuja Pasha and Lieutenant General (R) Zaheerul Islam.
Although Pasha has been mentioned earlier to have been behind the last year sit-ins, General Zaheer has been named now for the first time to have conspired against the democratically elected constitutional government of Nawaz Sharif. The irony, however, remains that despite crossing their limits in violation of law and Constitution, none of these retired Generals have been questioned either by the civilian government or the military leadership.
Talking to Absar Alam in his show, the defence minister said that because of his role against the elected government General Zaheerul Islam had hurt the national interest.
Khawaja Asif said that General Zaheer had a grudge against the government for its stance on Geo issue after the April 2014 attack on Hamid Mir. To settle his personal grudge, Khawaja Asif said, General Zaheer hurt the national interest. The minister said that the situation was handled well by the prime minister, who remained patient. He lamented that for personal objectives, the national interest was compromised.
Khawaja Asif said that General Zaheer turned against the government after the Geo issue and become part in pushing up the London Plan. “General Zaheer has a personal grievance,” the minister said, adding that General Shuja Pasha also had a role in the London Plan.
Khawaja Asif said that before General Zaheer, General Pasha had been meeting politicians in order to influence them to join the PTI. In a Karachi restaurant, he said, General Pasha told the corporate executives in 2012 to finance PTI’s political activities.
The minister also said the media and media persons were also used to destabilise the government and make the 2014 sit-ins successful in order to get the elected prime minister resigned but it did not happen.
Everything was planned and orchestrated against the elected government and for this the media and media persons were used. Khawaja Asif said that his 2006 National Assembly speech, which had a definite context, was also run on TV channels to target him and the government.
When asked if 2015 would see the repeat of 2014, the defence minister ruled it out saying that today there is complete unanimity between the civilian and military leadership on all issues including National Action Plan, Zarb-e-Azb and foreign policy.He said presently the government and the institutions are working as one unit for the better future of Pakistan.