In his first public address since losing his government via a successful no-confidence motion against him in the National Assembly, former Prime Minister Imran Khan has announced to lauch nation-wide protests.
“Whenever a prime minister of Pakistan was removed, people used to distribute sweets. But I am thankful to God that I was removed and you all came and gave me such respect,” Khan said in his opening remarks while addressing his supporters.
“Pakistan has now become a nation. Whoever thought that an imported government of the US would be accepted by this nation … on Sunday, the entire nation gave their answer that the imported government stands rejected.
Khan said that the “decisive moment” has arrived and the nation needs to choose if it wants slavery or liberty. “Do we want to be the slaves of the US’ slaves or do we want real freedom?”
He said that the ‘imported government’ currently in charge was full of individuals out on bail. “Shehbaz Sharif is out on bail, his son is out on bail, Nawaz Sharif is a convict, and his son is an absconder in London and the same is the case with his sons, daughter and son-in-law.”
Khan said that the Americans have “disrespected” Pakistan by “imposing outlaws” on this nation. “I will go to every city of the country … and I challenge to them that they would have never seen the kind of mobility of the public the way I would do.”
The PTI chairman accused newly appointed Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif of being involved in corruption to the tune of Rs40billion.
“Everyone should know that this is not the Pakistan of the 1970s when the US conspired to remove Zulfikar Ali Bhutto … this is not the same Pakistan. The Pakistan of today is of social media. The country has 60 million mobile phones. All our youth now have a voice and no one can zip their mouths.”
Khan addressed Shehbaz and told him to stop the harassment of PTI supporters. “This crackdown that you’re doing against our youth over social media … listen to this clearly … the day we give the call, you would not find a place to hide.”
Footage shared by the PTI showed a throng of people at the rally’s site.
Prior to Khan taking the stage, his fellow party leaders, including Ali Amin Gandapur, KP Chief Minister Mahmood Khan, Vice Chairman Shah Mahmood Qureshi, former defence minister Parvez Khattak, Awami Muslim League chief Sheikh Rashid and National Assembly Deputy Speaker Qasim Suri addressed the gathering.