Thursday, September 22, 2022
Federal Minister for Planning, Development and Special Initiatives Ahsan Iqbal criticised Chairman Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Imran Khan, saying he is launching assaults on the Pakistan Army. The minister also asked Imran Khan to dissolve the assemblies of Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa if he seeks early elections in the country.
Imran Khan has gone to the extent of saying, "An army of lions can't be ruled by a jackal," said the minister, speaking on the Geo News programme, "Aaj Shahzeb Khanzada Kay Sath" on Wednesday.
He said that the nation has clearly seen the narrative of Imran Khan's lies. Mentioning the PTI's past long marches and sit-ins, Ahsan Iqbal said the people of Pakistan will not support the PTI and those who bankroll this party mandate it to create chaos in the country.
Reacting to Imran Khan's remarks on Nawaz Sharif appointing the next army chief, Ahsan Iqbal said he [Imran Khan] liked the Nawaz-appointed army chief so much that he gave him a three-year extension. "How can he question Nawaz Sharif's decision now?" he asked.
Ahsan Iqbal also pointed out that Imran Khan said Nawaz Sharif is not eligible to appoint the next army chief, saying, "Nawaz Sharif will not decide the appointment. PM Shehbaz will," he said.
Replying to Imran Khan's demand for early elections, the minister said that if he wants elections, he should dissolve the governments of Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. If he does so, he will go one step closer to his demand, he said, adding that he doesn't want to part ways with the governments.
He further said that Imran Khan could not recover from the setback of losing his government. The minister claimed that Imran Khan is turning his personal battle into the country's devastation, given that the nation is faced with a huge calamity. He underscored the need to open all sorts of resources for the flood victims.
On one occasion, the programme host remarked that there are three things on the rise in the country: the dollar, inflation and Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif's cabinet, which has bulged to 72 members, with 24 of them not having any portfolio.
Ahsan Iqbal asked where Imran Khan's real freedom had gone when the PTI-led government signed an agreement with the International Monetary Fund (IMF). "The PTI government surrendered to the IMF," he said.
"The country was headed to stability as we signed an IMF deal. But, the country faced a massive loss worth $30 billion when the natural calamity of floods hit Pakistan," he noted.
"It is not because of our faults that we are facing economic woes. Instead, it is due to the huge calamity," he said.
However, the government will steer the country out of it and the country will enjoy stability once again, he added.
Imran Khan should be aware that this is a time to serve the country, not to advance his political ambitions, he claimed.