ISLAMABAD: Former Pakistan prime minister Imran Khan has claimed that the establishment is calling him but he has blocked their numbers and will not speak to anyone until a date for the general election is announced, contending that dropping an atom bomb on the country would be better than having “criminals” at the helm of the government.
Khan, who was voted out of power last month through a no-confidence motion, becoming the first Pakistan prime minister to be ousted unceremoniously by Parliament, urged people to prepare for the ‘historic march’ to the federal capital and said that “many options (would be) open when people come on streets.”
“Messages are coming from the establishment, but I will not talk to anyone unless the date of the next general election is announced,” Dawn newspaper quoted Khan as telling reporters on Friday. Khan said that he has “blocked their numbers”.
Khan has repeatedly said that the US conspired with the then Opposition leaders to topple his government. He asked people who supported the “conspiracy” whether they were not worried about Pakistan’s future, Geo news channel reported.
“It would have been better to drop an atom bomb on Pakistan than to have these criminals in power,” he said. The Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) chairman said he had learned about the “conspiracy” in June last year, but unfortunately, “all the decisions” were made to weaken his government and it was eventually sent packing.
Khan said his relationship with the establishment (the military) was good till the last day of his government, but there were two issues on which they did not see eye to eye.
The former prime minister said “powerful quarters” wanted Usman Buzdar removed as the chief minister of Punjab province, but he would tell them that there was “more corruption and governance issues in Sindh”.
The second disagreement with the establishment was over the then country’s spymaster Lt Gen Faiz Hameed.
“I couldn’t even think that corruption was not an issue for ‘powerful quarters’ and they would impose these criminals on the country, but unfortunately, that happened,” the 69-year-old cricketer-turned-politician said.
Earlier, Khan took a veiled dig at the powerful army for allowing the Opposition’s crucial no-confidence motion filed against him to become a success, saying he had warned the ‘neutrals’ that if the ‘conspiracy’ succeeded, the country’s fragile economic recovery would go into a “tailspin”.
Khan took to social media after the Pakistani rupee continued to depreciate and reached Rs 193 against the US dollar, the lowest in the country’s history. He said the “imported government” was doing nothing as the market was waiting for action.
Since his ouster, he has blamed the US for conspiring against his government — a stance that the incumbent government of Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif has refuted.
The state institutions like the judiciary and the military have been severely criticised by pro-Khan supporters since their leader was ousted from power through a no-confidence motion.
Since then, Khan held several public rallies in different cities, labelling the new government as “traitors and corrupt rulers” allegedly imposed at the behest of the US.