Islamabad march
to be a message to
US that we are a
free country: Imran

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PESHAWAR: PTI Chairman and former prime minister Imran Khan on Tuesday said that he would bring the nation out on the streets and march to Islamabad to give America the message that Pakistan was a “free country”.

Addressing parliamentarians at a ceremony in Peshawar, he urged his supporters to gather people from every village, street and locality and prepare them for the movement for “true freedom”.

Pakistan, Imran said, was formed on the slogan of La Ilaha Illallah (There is no god but Allah), adding that Muslims feared no one but Allah.

PTI Chairman Imran Khan addresses parliamentarians in Peshawar.

“We will take to the streets, march to Islamabad and give a message to America that we are a free country. We will give them the message that we’re an honourable country which won’t become anyone’s puppet. “We will tell them that we will not accept this imported government in any way,” the former prime minister said.

He recalled that America’s strategy of “regime change” in Pakistan was similar to what it did to Iran in the 1950s and then Chile. “They first gave money to the media outlets and turned them against the government. Then they bought politicians of the ruling party and later fed money to the opposition. “This is what they did in Pakistan too,” the PTI chairman said.

He also said that the party was going to hold a Shab-e-Dua (an evening for prayer) on Ramazan 27.

“I will be with Maulana Tariq Jameel and we will arrange screens in every city. We will all pray for the security, sovereignty and freedom of the country.”

Shehbaz brought through conspiracy

Imran claimed that newly elected Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif was brought to power via a “conspiracy”. “This conspiracy started when America decided to remove Imran Khan,” the PTI chairman said. “Their secretary Donald Lu came to our American ambassador and threatened him that if Imran Khan wasn’t removed Pakistan would have to face difficulties. He also said that if Imran Khan was removed by the no-confidence vote, Pakistan would be forgiven.”

“They [US] knew that the corrupt mafia would seek forgiveness,” Imran said, stating that America knew “these dacoits had money abroad. Always remember, all those leaders who have money, palaces and businesses abroad can never stand up to the US. They will always remain slaves to the US.”

KARACHI: PTI supporters march during a protest against the “biased attitude” of the chief election commissioner and to demand immediate general elections in the country, outside the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) office in Karachi, on Tuesday.

The ex-premier also called out the Shehbaz government for “weakening” the institutions of the country such as the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA), the National Accountability Bureau (NAB), and the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR).

As soon as he assumed power, Imran said, Shehbaz got all the cases against himself cancelled, fired all the FIA employees investigating him and replaced them with his own people, and started taking revenge.

KARACHI: PTI supporters march during a protest against the “biased attitude” of the chief election commissioner and to demand immediate general elections in the country, outside the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) office in Karachi, on Tuesday.

“Do you know what does this mean? This means that FIA and other institutions won’t ever be able to catch powerful dacoits now. They will be scared now. And this will weaken our institutions and lead the society towards collapse.”

Imran, subsequently, reiterated that now was the time to take charge and told his workers to communicate this message to people in every corner of the country.

Campaign against CEC

Imran also lashed out Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) Sikandar Sultan Raja, terming him a “planted agent” of PML-N. “Raja has lost all his credibility and should immediately resign,” he said.

“He has no reason to stay the CEC anymore. An umpire is always independent. When the country’s biggest party doesn’t have confidence in him, then it’s time for him to resign,” he said, warning that otherwise the PTI would announce protests across the country.

ISLAMABAD: Former interior minister Sheikh Rashid and PTI leader Shibli Faraz speak to the media during the protest outside the ECP office in Islamabad.

Imran further urged his supporters to start a campaign to collect signatures on an online petition against the CEC.

The former PM said that when the result of the foreign funding case would be announced, there would be just one party that would emerge with legal funding and that would be the PTI.

PTI stages protests outside ECP offices

Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) members staged protests outside Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) offices in different cities on Tuesday, condemning the alleged biased conduct of Chief Election Commissioner Sikandar Sultan Raja.

Television footage showed demonstrations were held in Karachi, Lahore, Islamabad, Peshawar, Gujrat and Faisalabad, among other cities.

The PTI had announced on Sunday that it would start staging protests outside ECP offices from today, alleging that the CEC had been biased against the party.

Chaudhry had made the announced on his official Twitter, saying that a meeting of the party’s political committee was held on Sunday wherein issues pertaining to the ECP were deliberated upon.

He had accused the CEC of being “partisan and dishonest” and alleged that a declaration to de-seat the PTI’s dissident assembly members had still not been issued by the ECP.