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Govt to make PTI more powerful if it arrests Imran Khan, warns Asad Qaiser



  • Asad Qaiser claims NA speaker violated Consitution.
  • NA Speaker accepted resignations of 34 PTI MNAs.
  • Qaiser says PTI doesn’t care about Imran’s incarceration.

Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) leader Asad Qaiser alleged that the government wants to to an environment that leads to political instability and warned that if former prime minister Imran Khan is arrested then it would make the party more powerful.

Speaking to Hamid Mir in Geo News programme ‘Capital Talk,’ Qaiser termed NA Speaker Raja Pervaiz Ashraf’s decision to accept the resignations of 34 PTI MNAs as a “great injustice” to his office.

Following the ouster of PTI Chairman Imran Khan through a vote of no-confidence in April last year, the party’s lawmakers resigned en masse from the lower house of parliament. However, Ashraf accepted only 11 resignations, initially, and said that the remaining PTI MNAs would have to appear individually for verification.

In a recent statement, Imran Khan had indicated that his party would rejoin the National Assembly to lead a vote of no-confidence against Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif. Ashraf’s move, followed by the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) denotifying the PTI MNAs, thwarted the PTI’s manoeuvre.

Reacting to the NA Speaker’s act, Qaiser said, “You should take the law and the Constitution into account while making decisions when you hold a constitutional position. Therefore, instead of granting the wishes of political figures, you must act in accordance with the law.”

Qaiser said that Ashraf reiterated his stance when a PTI delegation met him recently that he would call the party’s lawmakers individually for verification of their resignations. However, he said that the speaker stopped short of completing the process and did something that was “absolutely illegal and unconstitutional.”

He insisted, however, that the PTI would not challenge this move in court.

There is a contradiction in what Speaker Ashraf said, he added. It was not his decision to approve 35 resignations; he was asked to, he maintained.

The PTI seeks a fresh mandate in the country, he said. The bad governance by the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) in Sindh is an example, he noted. Accordingly, we are hashing out our plans for the general elections in Sindh. By-elections will benefit the party as our workers will be mobilised,” he noted.

Commenting on the Local Government elections in Sindh, the former NA speaker said that the PTI empathises with the MQM-P as it recognises their restrictions.

“Jamaat-e-Islami Karachi Amir Hafiz Naeem-ur-Rehman put up a tough fight. He is commendable,” he said. So far the results of local body elections in Karachi have not been given, he said.

Asad Qaiser also said that the government could detain party chief Imran Khan in the run-up to the general elections. The government, which he believed is “panicked”, can go to any length but the party doesn’t care, he said. 

“This [Imran’s arrest] would only end up strengthening the PTI,” warned Qaiser.


Abrarul Haq, Saifullah Nyazee quit PTI as wickets continue to fall




Expressing their regret over the May 9 mayhem, two more Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) leaders — singer-turned-politician Abrarul Haq and Senator Saifullah Niazi — on Friday announced quitting the party.

The PTI leaders’ mass exodus started when the security forces launched a crackdown against the party following the attacks on the civil and military institutions, including the General Headquarters in Rawalpindi and the Lahore Corps Commander’s House (Jinnah House). 

The riots were triggered by PTI Chairman Imran Khan’s arrest from Islamabad High Court in the Al-Qadir Trust graft case on May 9 — a day the army dubbed as “Black Day”.

Addressing a presser in Lahore, Haq said: “I regret standing with Imran Khan.”

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Imran Khan can be tried in military courts: interior minister




  • Pakistan Army Act, Official Secrets Act applicable to activities in military areas: minister.
  • “Many sensitive items were also present in Lahore Corps Commanders House.”
  • Says “only 6” out of nearly 500 cases are being processed to be tried under Army Act.

Interior Minister Rana Sanaullah said Friday that Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan’s possible trial in connection with the May 9 mayhem falls under the jurisdiction of military courts.

Talking to a media outlet, he said the Pakistan Army Act was applicable to all those who entered, sent other people, or abetted those who entered restricted areas.

Sanaullah said the Pakistan Army Act and the Official Secrets Act were applicable to activities in military areas. “The Jinnah House is the residence of the [Lahore] corps commander and his camp office. Many sensitive items were also present in Jinnah House.”

The minister was referring to the attack on the Jinnah House by enraged PTI workers on May 9 following Khan’s arrest in the Al-Qadir Trust case. During the days-long protest, private and public properties were vandalised in cities across the country and PTI workers also attacked military installations, including the Jinnah House and the General Headquarters (GHQ) entrance.

The military has dubbed May 9 a “Black Day” and insisted that all those involved in the vandalism of military installations would be tried under the Pakistan Army Act and the Official Secrets Act. Chief of Army Staff General Asim Munir has said the legal process in this regard has been started.

Earlier today, Sanaullah said that “only six” out of nearly 500 cases filed after the May 9 vandalism are being processed to be tried under the Army Act, rejecting the perception created by the PTI that all of those arrested will face military courts.

“The remaining will be tried by ordinary courts,” he said in a presser today in a bid to clear the air regarding the government’s crackdown against those allegedly involved in the May 9 mayhem.

“Various analyses and conspiracies have been spreading … so I thought it best to appear here and state the facts and figures,” Sanaullah said.

Sharing details about the legal action taken so far against the vandals who had attacked government and military installations, the interior minister said that following the riots, 499 First Information Reports (FIRs) had been registered in Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.

“Of these, 88 have been registered under the Anti-Terrorism Act [ATA], while 411 have been registered on other charges.”

Sanaullah further shared that 3,944 suspects had been arrested in the two provinces, adding 2,588 of them were taken into custody from Punjab, while 1,099 were arrested by KP authorities.

The interior minister added that another 5,536 arrests were made in other cases; however, of these, 80% have been released on bail.

Moreover, in a bid to clear the air regarding the military courts, he categorically denied rumours that all cases would be tried by military courts and explained that only seven of the 499 cases are being processed to be tried in military courts.

“It is being said that everything is being taken to military courts. This is not true. Only 19 accused have been transferred to military courts in Punjab and 14 in KP. Nowhere else are these measures being taken,” he clarified.

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Maleeka Bokhari joins long list of PTI deserters




  • “Events of May 9 painful for every Pakistani,” Maleeka Bokhari says.
  • “There’s no pressure on me to leave the party,” Bokhari says.
  • “I also want to spend time with my family,” ex-lawmaker says.

ISLAMABAD: Maleeka Bokhari, a former parliamentarian, Thursday announced quitting the Imran Khan-led Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI), joining a long list of leaders to desert the party following the May 9 riots.

“I condemn the events that transpired on May 9. For every Pakistani, the events that took place on May 9 are very painful,” the former member of the National Assembly said in a press conference in Islamabad.

Announcing her “dissociation” from the party, Bokhari said she wasn’t under duress and “no one forced me into making this decision”.

“As a lawyer, I want to play a positive role in Pakistan. I also want to spend time with my family,” she said.

Bokhari quit the party hours after her release from Adiala Jail, where she was sent after being arrested under Section 4 of the Maintenance of Public Order.

Khan’s party has been feeling the heat of the state’s might after his party workers burnt and smashed military installations, including the General Headquarters in Rawalpindi, after his arrest on May 9 — a day the army dubbed as “Black Day”.

Several party leaders and thousands of workers have been rounded up in connection with the violent protests and the army has insisted that the people involved in attacks on military installations be tried under the Pakistan Army Act and the Official Secrets Act.

A close aide of Khan, Asad Umar, has relinquished his posts of secretary general and core committee member, citing the ongoing situation.

Several party leaders and lawmakers — including Shireen Mazari, Aamir Mehmood Kiani, Malik Amin Aslam, Mahmood Moulvi, Aftab Siddiqui, Fayyazul Hassan Chohan among others — have publicly denounced the attacks on the state installations and announced leaving the former ruling party since the May 9 vandalism.

Defence Minister Khawaja Asif said the federal government was considering imposing a ban on the PTI after receiving evidence that the party’s supporters carried out “pre-planned” and “coordinated” attacks on public properties and military installations.

In her presser, Bokhari backed the authorities’ decision to investigate the May 9 events and said the people behind the violent events should be punished.

“When a red line has been crossed, then action should be taken in line with the law,” she added.

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