ISLAMABAD: Calling Pakistan’s long Tehreek-e-Insaf march a “flop show”, Interior Minister Rana Sanaullah said former prime minister Imran Khan was leading the march with “about 5,000 to 6,000” people only against its claim to hold the largest gathering of two million people.
Addressing a press conference on Wednesday, Sanaullah, accompanied by Information Minister Marriyum Aurangzeb, said if Imran Khan had a “sense of shame”, then Khan would have ended the march. The situation in Punjab is peaceful at the moment and only a few thousand people have come out to Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa, he said.
He said the people of Punjab “are not part of Khan’s march”. The minister said the government should not have made such large-scale preparations if it knew the march would only have “a few participants”. “We suspended metro operations, postponed exams, people found it difficult to get around and patients also had problems,” he added.
The interior minister said that only a few thousand people were part of the march from Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa and that they were “in possession of weapons and tear gas”. They are “attempting to attack” the capital while using government resources, he said, adding that this is an unconstitutional act and the PTI leadership will bear the consequences. However, arrangements have been made to deal with people coming from Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa and this drama would be over within three to four hours, he said.
Without naming Sheikh Rasheed, he said we were looking for the person of tomorrow who claimed to bring a ‘bloody march’. Khan had claimed a few days ago that he would reach the Srinagar highway with two million people, but so far “even 10 people” have not gathered on the Srinagar highway, he said. he declares.
Fears grow as IK says it will defy long march ban
The minister said the Supreme Court had taken cognizance of the case and Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif said any order from the Supreme Court would be implemented as it is the guardian of the constitution.
He also said that the supreme court has ordered to form a negotiating team in which Babar Awan will represent the PTI while the Prime Minister has also formed a four-member committee to find a solution to the ongoing crises.
He said the petition was filed by Faisal Chaudhry of the PTI and Babar Awan also appeared in court. We offered them a place near Rawalpindi where Tablighi Ijtima is held every year.
The minister rejected reports of talks between PTI and the government and news of an agreement reached between PTI and the government.
The minister said peaceful protest is the democratic and constitutional right of every citizen and no one will be allowed to spread violence and lawlessness.
Sanaullah said he apologized to the people on behalf of the government for inconveniencing them.
On the arrest of protesters, he said as many as 1,700 protesters had been arrested by the police and so far 250 had been released.
Sanaullah said people in Balochistan are not even aware of the PTI’s long march, adding that the situation in Sindh is peaceful.
Sindh residents also refused to be part of the PTI march.
He claimed that one of the groups, led by Ali Amin Gandapur and Amjad Niazi, marched towards the capital with “the machines, cranes, tear gas and weapons of the irrigation department”.
Copyright Business Recorder, 2022