Monday June 24, 2024

Imran Khan again targets ‘neutrals’

Imran said a bunch of thieves is leading the country towards nowhere and people know where the real power rests

By Mumtaz Alvi & Sarfaraz Khan
June 03, 2022
PM Imran addressing a public rally in Bisham, Shangla on June 03, 2022. Photo: Twitter
PM Imran addressing a public rally in Bisham, Shangla on June 03, 2022. Photo: Twitter

BISHAM/ISLAMABAD: Former prime minister and Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan on Thursday said the country was on the verge of collapse and history would not forgive the establishment if it continued to stay neutral.

"A bunch of thieves is leading the country towards nowhere and people know where the real power rests," the PTI chief told a public meeting at the Bisham town of Shangla district. 

He said one could not remain neutral when the country was going down, adding that Pakistan could not secure cheap oil from Russia owing to the US pressure. He claimed that his government was trying to strike a deal with Russia for securing cheap oil, but it was ousted under a conspiracy.

"We have to shun the state of fear. We have to bury the fear factor if we want to become a great nation," Imran said and vowed to continue holding rallies till the announcement of fresh elections. 

He said he would stay in the province for a few more days to prepare people for the next long march. The imported rulers had no courage to take bold decisions in the interest of the country. They have to protect their wealth abroad and can't take decisions in the interest of the country.

About the expatriate Pakistanis' recent visit to Israel, Imran said his government was against recognising Israel. "We want that all legitimate demands of Palestinians be accepted," he said and reiterated that he would not accept the imported government and urged the people to wait for his next call. "I will announce my next strategy at a rally in Upper Dir," the PTI chief said.

Meanwhile, in a series of tweets, the former PM said: “I want everyone to come out and protest peacefully after Juma prayers against this imported government’s anti-people policies of massive price hike to crush the public and wreak economic havoc on the country since they have no stakes here as their assets are all abroad.”

“The imported govt has increased petroleum prices by 40pc or Rs 60pc per litre. This will increase burden on the public by Rs900 billion and hike prices of basic necessities. Plus, the Rs8 per unit increase in electricity price will put the entire country into shock. Expect inflation by 30pc which will be highest in 75 years,” he wrote.

He also wrote: “Our government sustained pressure of Covid and gave a Rs 1,200 billion economic package. This year alone, we reduced sales tax to zero per cent and additionally provided Rs466 billion energy subsidies to protect our public. For us, our priority has always been our people. This cabal of crooks poses a far more serious threat to Pakistan than any of our external enemies.

“Those who conspired to topple our government had no plans to deal with the economy. Their main priority was to give themselves NRO2 (immunity from their corruption cases), rig elections, destroy state institutions with their goons and crush opposition thru FIRs and state power,” he wrote.

Meanwhile, PTI Senior Vice-President Chaudhry Fawad Hussain said: “We are standing here with a heavy heart, as unless you see the institutions working as per the Constitution in a functional state, people don’t have trust and how much will you trust and respect the Election Commission of Pakistan made with the help of turncoat association.”

Talking to reporters outside the ECP Secretariat here, he alleged that the ECP had deferred a notification regarding five MPAs elected on reserved seats after those who had voted for Hamza Shehbaz were deseated. The reason, he pointed out, behind this was to prolong Hamza’s chief minister-ship as much as possible. He said this government was surviving illegally and unconstitutionally. He explained that after the deseating of 25 MPAs, Hamza no more enjoyed the support of 193 members and his support reduced to around 172, whereas he must have support of 186 members in the House. “Hence, a minority chief minister has been imposed on the majority in the House,” he said.

Meanwhile, PTI Secretary General Asad Umar tweeted: “From June 2018 till the no-confidence vote, the PTI govt increased foreign exchange reserves by 65%. Since then, in just 3 months, all the increase is gone and reserves are lower than June 2018! Hurtling towards a Sri Lanka-like situation.”