Imran Khan indirectly blames “some elements” in establishment for his ouster as Pak PM


PTI, Apr 21, 2022, 8:59 AM IST

Ousted Pakistani prime minister Imran Khan has indirectly blamed ”some elements” in the establishment for him losing power, as one of his close aides admitted their party’s relationship with the military establishment had deteriorated.

”Relations between the establishment and the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) government had strained for months. We tried our best, including myself, to remove misunderstandings with the establishment but could not succeed,” former minister Fawad Chaudhry told a private news channel on Wednesday.

Addressing the party workers live on a Twitter space later at night, Imran Khan said: ”There are also humans in institutions. If one or two individuals do something wrong, the entire institution is not responsible. If one person (in an apparent reference to Army chief Gen Qamar Javed Bajwa) makes a mistake, this does not mean that the whole institution is at fault.” Khan, 69, called on his supporters to reach Minar-i-Pakistan in Lahore on Thursday to make it the biggest ever rally in the country’s history.

Khan last week became the only Pakistani prime minister to be ousted in a no-confidence motion in Parliament, paving the way for the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz’s Shehbaz Sharif (PML-N) to form the government.

At the Twitter space, Khan said all institutions are not corrupt but some ”elements indulge in bad practices”.

Khan, in the same breath, praised the Army, saying ”Pakistan needs the Armed forces more than Imran Khan. Had the strong Army not been here Pakistan might have been dismembered into three pieces.” Since the ouster of Khan, there has been anti-Bajwa and anti-judges trends on social media forcing the army chief and the chief justice of Pakistan to condemn the smear campaign.

Both the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) and Federal Investigation Agency launched a crackdown on PTI social media activists and arrested 15 people. Such Twitter trends could not be curbed despite the agencies action.

Khan further said that his own party lawmakers turned against him when they were not allowed to carry on with ”corruption”. He was referring to the Jahangir Tareen and Aleem Khan groups that left him causing his government to fall.

On the possible return of three-time premier and PML-N supreme leader Nawaz Sharif in the wake of his party’s return to power, Imran Khan said: ”If Nawaz Sharif comes back and gets another ‘NRO’ (National Reconciliation Ordinance deal), it will make a mockery of the justice system in Pakistan.” Nawaz Sharif, 72, who is entangled in a number of corruption cases, has been in London since November 2019 after the Lahore High Court granted him permission to go abroad for four weeks for medical treatment.

Khan termed the last three years – the ones spent as prime minister – the toughest of his life.

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