Listen Carefully, The Things I Know…

Imran Khan addressed his party supporters in Lahore.

Lahore/Islamabad:

Imran Khan said on Friday that he will remain “silent” as he does not want to “damage” the country and its institutions, a day after the ISI chief said the former prime minister had made a “lucrative offer” to the Pakistan Army General Qamar Javed. Bajwa in return for supporting his government during the political turmoil in March this year.

Addressing his party supporters at Lahore’s famous Liberty Chowk after launching his protest rally towards Islamabad demanding early elections, the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf chief said his march is not for politics or l ‘personal interest, but to gain real freedom and ensure that all decisions have been taken. in Pakistan and not in London or Washington.

“My only goal is to liberate my nation and make Pakistan a free country,” said Khan, atop a container.

Khan rejected the allegations by ISI chief Lt Gen Nadeem Ahmed Anjum in an unprecedented press conference on Thursday, saying it was one-sided and that he was only “talking about Iman Khan” and never uttered a word against the “thieves” in the government.

“DG ISI, listen carefully, the things I know, I am silent for my institutions and the country. I don’t want to harm my country,” the PTI leader said as the crowd cheered.

“Our criticism is for constructive purposes and for your improvement. I can say more, but I will not say that it will hurt the institution,” he said.

Lt Gen Anjum on Thursday said Army chief Gen Bajwa was given a “lucrative offer” by the then government amid political unrest in March. General Bajwa is expected to retire next month after a 3-year extension.

The unprecedented press conference by the spy chief came as the country grappled with different versions about the killing of journalist Arshad Sharif in Kenya and indirect allegations against the armed forces. Sharif was killed at a police checkpoint an hour away from Nairobi on Sunday evening, creating a storm in the country.

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Kenyan police later said it was a case of “mistaken identity” during a search for a similar car involved in a child abduction case.

Addressing his supporters, Khan said that unlike Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) supremo Nawaz Sharif, “he was not a fugitive who would sit quietly here or criticize the army in London.” .

“I am not going to leave this country. I will live and die in this country,” the PTI leader added.

“If the managers and facilitators of thieves in this imported government think that (the government) should be accepted by us, then listen, this nation will make every sacrifice, but it will never accept these thieves,” he said.

Khan also promised that the march would be peaceful. “Our march will be according to the law, we will not break any rules. We will not enter the (high security) Red Zone and we will only go to the areas that have been designated by the Supreme Court for the protests,” he said.

He also said that the Supreme Court failed to protect the constitutional right of his supporters during the demonstration on May 25, but he hoped that “this time our rights will be protected.”

Khan, 70, plans to arrive in Islamabad on November 4 and has sought formal permission from the government to allow his party to hold a protest rally. His party made the demonstration as a “Haqiqi Azadi March” or a protest for the real freedom of the country.

It is not clear whether he will return after the demonstration or turn it into a sit-in on the model of his 2014 protest when a 126-day sit-in was organized by his followers in front of the building of the parliament.

The government rejected the march and the Minister of Information, Marriyum Aurangzeb, said that the nation had refused to be subjected to a “foreign-funded” instigator and had rejected the “bloody march”.

Interior Minister Rana Sanaullah during a press conference flanked by officials of the Federal Investigation Agency in Islamabad, said that Khan tried to “threaten” the government and institutions to “get a date for the elections”, but failed in this regard.

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The minister said that after all the PTI leader’s tactics failed, he has now resorted to a long march.

“He made many speeches and used the word ‘neutral’. But when all this failed, he had no choice but to try something else,” Sanaullah said.

He warned that “strict action will be taken if they try to break the law and create a law and order situation in the capital.” it will prevent them from exercising their democratic right.

Climate Change Minister Sherry Rehman said Khan considers himself to be “above the law and the Constitution” as he accused the PTI leader of feeding lies.

Rehman said that Imran was a “fascist” who considered himself the “king”. “That’s why it drives people to violence,” he added.

PTI Secretary General Asad Umar earlier told the media in Lahore that the protest would be peaceful. He said that the party has decided to dedicate the march to the slain journalist Sharif.

The country was faced with different versions about the murder of the journalist Sharif in Kenya and indirect allegations against the armed forces.

Former information minister Fawad Chaudhry said the PTI’s long march had only one agenda – fresh elections.

The PTI leader told Dawn News that the people of Pakistan wanted new elections to be held. “People came out in hundreds and thousands. This is our fight for true freedom,” he said.

He told the “managers” of the incumbent government that they were facing a “flood of people” against which no one could stand.

“Your managers, listen carefully. This is a flood of people and no one can be against it,” he said while addressing the protesters as their march reached Ichhra in Lahore.

During a brief stopover at Lahore’s Ichhra, Khan delivered another fiery speech, this time aimed at the government.

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“They steal money, go abroad, come back after getting an NRO and then come back [to power] again,” Khan said from atop his container as Shah Mahmood Qureshi stood behind him.

“What do they think of us? What are we bher bakriyan (stupid)? Those who stole billions from our country and live in mansions in London are made Prime Minister,” he said.

Meanwhile, the Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (Pemra) has ordered television channels not to air live broadcast programs and other content, especially while covering the speeches of PTI leaders and the long march.

The Pemra said while monitoring the broadcast on Friday, it was observed during a speech “statements against state institutions were broadcast live” in violation of the code of conduct and court order.

He ordered television channels to refrain from “broadcasting content that [is] it is equivalent to the malignancy / misfortune of the state institutions (warnings or inadvertences) and to sensitize their editorial boards, directors (new and programming), offices and journalists in the field to respect these directives.

Pemra has warned of legal action, leading to the suspension and revocation of licenses, in case of non-compliance.

Khan called for early elections and threatened a protest march to Islamabad to enforce his demands if the government did not give a date for the elections. The mandate of the National Assembly ends in August 2023 and new elections should be held within 60 days.

Khan, who was ousted from power in April after losing a vote of no confidence in his leadership, spoke of a “threatening letter” from the United States and claimed it was part of a foreign conspiracy to oust him because it was not accepted to follow an independent foreign policy. The United States has unequivocally rejected the allegations.

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published by a syndicated feed.)

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