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Imran Khan plans to gather 2mn people for Islamabad sit-in

LAHORE: Former Prime Minister and Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan said on Wednesday that he wanted two million people to gather in Islamabad when he gives the call to his party’s supporters to march to Islamabad and stage a sit-in there.

Addressing to workers’ convention in Lahore, he said: “I want two million people to come to Islamabad when I give the call. I want all of you to go to the people and preach to them about our movement for true freedom.”

Imran Khan said that his party will observe Ramadan 27 (a possible Shab-e-Qadr) as “Shab-e-Dua” (Night of Prayers) and urged all Pakistanis to join PTI’s Shab-e-Dua for the “real freedom of Pakistan”.

The former prime minister also asked party representatives to launch a public campaign at Union Councils level in their constituencies for preparations regarding the party’s Islamabad march.

Imran Khan said that he will address a rally in Multan on Friday and will gear up his mass contact campaign after Eidul Fitr.

While taking aim at PM the PTI chief said: “Shehbaz Sharif is looking for another NRO (National Reconciliation Ordinance) and if he succeeds again in getting NRO 2, Pakistan will never be able to stand on its own feet’’.

Imran Khan once again accused Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) Sikander Sultan Raja of being a Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) agent and demanded his resignation.

Imran claimed that the leaders of the incumbent government will be easily controllable since their assets and wealth were stashed abroad. “They will enslave the whole country to save their looted wealth. They will sacrifice the country for the interests of another.”

He maintained that the move to oust him was born due to the fact that he wanted to follow an independent foreign policy that would benefit the people of Pakistan.

“The conspiracy was carried out because your prime minister said he wanted a foreign policy that would only look at the interests of his people. That is why a conspiracy was carried out.

Giving the example of former Iranian prime minister Mohammad Mosaddegh, Imran said that the US and Britain colluded to conduct a regime operation.

“What was the plan? First they fed money to the media […] they did character assassination and levelled charges against him. Then, they gave bribes to his party’s parliamentarians to get them to switch loyalties. Then, opposition parties were given money and were brought onto the streets.”

He claimed that a conspiracy similar to the one against the Mosaddegh government was carried out against his own government.

“Campaigns were run on media calling us the most incompetent government.” He urged party workers to inform the people of the PTI government’s performance and the way it had effectively handled the economy while also successfully battling the Covid-19 pandemic.

The PTI chairman also alleged that US embassy officials met with his party’s lawmakers, some of who later became turncoats. “When embassy officials meet [lawmakers], they discuss foreign policy. They met our people who knew nothing about foreign policy, but who they knew were unhappy with the party.”

He reiterated that US Assistant Secretary of State for Central and South Asia Donald Lu met the Pakistani envoy in Washington on March 7 and told him that a no-trust move would be tabled against the PTI government.

“He knew beforehand. He also said that Pakistan would have to suffer the consequences if it is not successful. He said the US would isolate Pakistan and the European Union would also follow suit. But he said that if Imran Khan is removed, then Pakistan would be forgiven.”

He alleged that preparations for this had been done beforehand, adding that the no-trust move was tabled immediately after the meeting was held. “This is called a conspiracy. First, a conspiracy is carried out, preparations are done and then there is interference.”

Imran went on to say that if this conspiracy was successful, no prime minister would dare to stand up to foreign countries in the future. “This is a war for our freedom.”

Imran also lambasted the purported media blackout of the PTI on mainstream TV channels and questioned why the defenders of press freedom were not standing up against it.

“During our stint in power, 80 per cent of the programmes were against our government. So why is there a media blackout now?” he asked.

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