ISLAMABAD: Minister for Information and Broadcasting Marriyum Aurangzeb on Friday said that Imran Khan might hire services of any international agency including the Scotland Yard for investigating the firing incident but he had to become part of the investigation and must present evidence to prove his allegations against Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif and Interior Minister Rana Sanaullah.
Addressing a news conference, the minister refuted the allegations leveled by Imran Khan on the prime minister, Rana Sanaullah and others about their involvement in the firing incident occurred near Wazirabad the other day. “How Imran Khan, who has a government in Punjab where this incident took place, can demand resignation of these three persons prior to any investigation into the matter,” she wondered, adding the provincial government was responsible for the attack which did not take prerequisite measures despite the threat alerts.
Marriyum asked Imran Khan to abstain from hurling allegations without any proof, and let the police to lodge First Information Report (FIR) into the case.
The minister alleged that Imran Khan was pressurizing the police to ensure registration of an FIR as per his will. His party workers had attacked the police station in Gujrat where the accused had been kept and recorded three statements so far. She said Imran Khan was not letting the police to register FIR of the case as he knew that he was lying altogether. He even went to Shaukat Khanum for operation and so far not visited any government hospital for obtaining the medico-legal report which was a legal requirement in a criminal case.
“We are saying that the investigation should be done but Imran Khan was saying no,” she said, adding there was the best forensic laboratory in the Punjab which was set up by Shehbaz Sharif while being the provincial chief minister. She categorically stated that Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif and Interior Minister Rana Sanaullah had nothing to do with the attack on Imran Khan.
Marriyum said the chief minister of Punjab had to answer to the public as the people were looking toward him. She asked as to why Imran Khan ignored the threat alerts and what were the reasons behind slackness of the Punjab government which did not take any precautionary measure despite prior warnings. The minister asked Imran Khan as to why he did not call off the long march on receiving threat alerts which could have saved the innocent lives.
Imran Khan had received quality medical treatment in the Shaukat Khanum Hospital, but what about those people who sustained injuries and got killed during the incident, she regretted. She said though the prime minister had announced the compensation for the injured but it was very unfortunate that Imran Khan did not bother to mention name of any injured person in his address to his party workers .
The minister urged the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf to refrain from using religious card over the incident as the country had already incurred massive loss and spilled enough blood due to such type of politics. “We need to sit together and chalk out strategy to curb extremism and growing intolerance,” she added.
She regretted that one of the PTI leaders was inciting people for the revenge which showed that the party wanted bloodshed in the country. Marriyum said the reports were received about violent protests at Faizabad where glasses of the hotels were broken, people were beaten and tyres were burnt. She said Imran Khan was bent upon creating the chaos and anarchy in the country.
He had already created chaos in the country and upping the ante gradually by lying and misleading the people.
The minister reminded Imran Khan that the people could not be fooled all the time as they were not sheep and lambs. She said Imran Khan wanted the protest to be continued as it was his desire that the country faced problem in the FATF. Imran should accept that he was removed in constitutional way and there was an elected government which had been working for the country’s betterment, she maintained. “We have condemned the attack on Imran Khan and condemnation poured in from across the country,” she said, adding the political arena should not be turned into the bloody one.
Marriyum said if Imran Khan really wanted the election, he would have dissolved the National Assembly on March 7 when he received the cipher as per his own statement. He worked out the foreign conspiracy and cipher narratives after he realized that his ouster from the power was imminent.
She said he made an offer to the army chief for lifetime extension and then he repeatedly beseeched the institutions to save his government, but in vain. He started attacking the state institutions when the army chief refused to take any unconstitutional step, she added. She asked why this regime change conspiracy and cipher was not disclosed on March 7.
The minister said the leaked audios reaffirmed the government’s stance that Imran Khan had weaved the false narrative of foreign conspiracy even before his ouster. However, the leaked audios buried his false narratives once and for all. She said he wanted to protect of his corruption, foreign funding, loot and plunder which was committed through his frontperson Farah Gogi. Marriyum said Imran Khan had sold gifts from Toshakhana by revising its policy. The entire record of the Toshakhana was with the government which would soon bring to the fore another corruption scandal of him. She said Imran Khan had to answer about selling a “diamond set” worth $5 million from Toshakhana through his frontperson Farah Gogi in a foreign country. The minister asked Imran Khan to not to lecture government on freedom of press as he was a certified “predator” for journalism and had a track record of muzzling the media, off airing the anchorpersons and breaking the ribs of reporters.