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National

August 29, 2018

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Imran reduces social media use after polls

ISLAMABAD: After the July 25 general elections and his swearing in as prime minister on August 18, Imran Khan has drastically reduced his use of Twitter to express political opinions, make announcements and inspire his followers.

He has since posted just 32 tweets – 16 each carrying similar content in the English and Urdu languages. Imran Khan figures prominently among the few world leaders, notably US President Donald Trump, who use the micro-blogging website to articulate their views, at times making public their policies on major issues through this medium.

Of Khan’s recent tweets, three posts were related to India in one way or the other; two pertained to the appointment of Ehsan Mani as the Chairman of the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB); three referred to Usman Buzdar, the new chief minister of Punjab; one related to Turkish President Tayyip Erodgen; and two tweets contained historical pictures of Khan's elders.

An August 23 tweet read: “On behalf of the people of Pakistan, we send our prayers and best wishes to those who have been devastated by the floods in Kerala, India. We stand ready to provide any humanitarian assistance that may be needed.”

On August 21, Khan posted: To move forward, Pakistan and India must engage in dialogue and resolve their conflicts including Kashmir. The best way to alleviate poverty and uplift the people of the subcontinent is to resolve our differences through dialogue and start trading”.

On the same day, another tweet read: “I want to thank [cricketer Navjot Singh] Sidhu for coming to Pakistan for my oath taking. He was an ambassador of peace and was given amazing love and affection by people of Pakistan. Those in India who targeted him are doing a great disservice to peace in the subcontinent - without peace our people cannot progress”.

On August 20, Imran Khan posted: “I have appointed Ehsan Mani as Chairman PCB. He brings vast and valuable experience to the job. He represented PCB in the ICC [International Cricket Council]; was Treasurer ICC for 3 years and then headed the ICC for another 3 years.”

On the same day, he also wrote: “We will follow the set procedure which entails my nominating him on the PCB Board of Governors. He may then contest elections for the position of Chairman PCB.”

However, on March 27, 2016, Imran Khan had tweeted: The reason cricket has, unlike elsewhere, failed to become an institution in Pakistan is because here the PM appoints the PCB Chief.

On August 18, three tweets about Usman Buzdar said: "This is the first time Punjab will have a CM from such a neglected area who is acutely aware of what has to be done there. I fully back him all the way. Usman comes from one of the most backward areas of Punjab - the tribal area of DG Khan Division. It is an area that has no electricity, water or a doctor for over 200,000 people. He understands the problems of the people of neglected areas and will be able to ensure their uplift as CM… I want to make it clear I stand by our nominee Usman Buzdar for CM Punjab. I have done my due diligence over the past two weeks and have found him to be an honest man. He has integrity and stands by my vision and ideology of Naya Pakistan." He extended outright support to Buzdar, following widespread public criticism of his nomination as Punjab chief minister.

A post by Khan on August 14 said: On behalf of the people of Pakistan and myself, I want to let President Erdogan and the people of Turkey know we are praying for their success in dealing with the severe economic challenges confronting them, as they have always succeeded against adversities in their glorious history."

Another post on Independence Day said: “In this historic picture of Quaid-i-Azam and Iqbal, at the Round Table Conference in London 1932, my khalu [uncle] Dr Jehangir Khan and my mother’s chacha [uncle] Zaman Khan (Zaman Park is named after him) were also present. On this Independence Day, I am filled with the greatest optimism. Despite our grave economic crises, due to corruption and cronyism, I know if we are united in our resolve, we will rise to the challenge and Pakistan will become the great nation envisaged by our Quaid and Iqbal.”

On August 10, Imran Khan posted: Good news for our national asset, the Overseas Pakistanis - PTI's struggle for their voting rights' implementation has been won as the Supreme Court has decided this must be done and directed Election Commission of Pakistan to ensure the same through electronic means."

“I want all Pakistanis to celebrate 14th August, our Independence Day, with full fervour - especially as we are now moving towards Naya Pakistan and reclaiming Jinnah's vision InshaAllah,” he tweeted.

Khan was also “saddened to learn of the death of our newly-elected MPA from Rajanpur Tariq Dreeshak. My condolences and prayers go to the family.”

On August 4, Imran Khan wrote: On Police Martyrs' Day we salute our police martyrs who laid down their lives in defence of the nation and its citizens. We are committed to strengthening the police force across all provinces, as we did in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, by making it a merit-based, professional force free from political interference.

An August 3 tweet said: Shocking and condemn-able torching of schools in Gilgit-Baltistan, more than half of them girls' schools.This is unacceptable and we will ensure security for schools as we are committed to focusing on education, especially girls' education which is integral to Naya Pakistan."

After the parliamentary polls, Imran Khan reduced his number of Twitter posts, while President Trump continues to uses the micro-blogging website every day.

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