Shahbaz Govt not
to hold elections in
next 90 mandatory
days; clears Marrium


ISLAMABAD: Federal Information Minister Marriyum Aurangzeb on Friday said that general elections would be held after the government completes its tenure, as she excoriated former prime minister Imran Khan and his governance. “In other words, present set-up has decided not to hold election in mandatory 90 days”, the political observers believe.

Addressing a news conference in Islamabad, she said, “And when the elections are held this time, the mistake of the RTS’s (Results Transmission System) failure will not happen again, Imran Khan sahib.

“This time, fog won’t appear like it did in Daska. This time, ballot boxes will not be stolen like they were in Daska. This time, officers of the Election Commission of Pakistan will not go missing like they did in Daska.”

ISLAMABAD: Federal Information Minister Marriyum Aurangzeb speaks during a press conference in Islamabad on Friday.

The minister claimed that people had “learnt from their mistake” and would not vote for Imran Khan again, adding that they had realised that he was a “liar and a hypocrite”.

Aurangzeb’s statements come a day after former prime minister and PTI chairman Imran Khan, held a rally at Minar-e-Pakistan, attended by thousands of supporters. In it, he once again demanded immediate elections, urging “whoever made the mistake” of ousting him to rectify it and call elections.

Since Khan was removed as prime minister in a no-confidence vote, he has been consistently calling for elections to be held, questioning the legitimacy of the new Shehbaz Sharif government, and dismissing it as “imported”.

In his speech yesterday, Khan had also called upon the entire nation to get ready for a nationwide movement to achieve “real” independence and democracy. “I’m not giving a call just to the PTI but all of Pakistan: You all have to prepare in the streets, cities and villages. You have to wait for my call when I call you all to Islamabad,” he had said.

In Aurangzeb’s press briefing today, the information minister said that the nation would decide for itself no matter what the ex-premier said, accusing him of trying to “malign” institutions.

“This campaign that you’re running against the institutions … We have taken notice of it,” she said. “Sometimes you call strained relations with the establishment the reason for your government’s fall. Sometimes you talk of a conspiracy.

“Let me tell you today, the reason for your ouster is you and your deeds,” Aurangzeb said, demanding an apology from Khan.

Meanwhile, referring to Khan’s “mistake” remark, she said that the former PM, himself, made the “biggest” mistakes. “He’s the man who snatched medicines from the public. He’s the man who created a sugar shortage. He’s the man who managed Modi’s campaigns. He’s the man who laundered money via foreign funding.

“You talk about mistakes … You attacked the Constitution, you attacked parliament, you tried to attack the no-confidence vote. You looted the Bait-ul-Mal by selling the gifts that you got as the prime minister,” the federal minister said.

She added that all these mistakes would be corrected now. “The nation has learnt and it will vote for those who brought it growth and prosperity.”