LAHORE / SARGODHA: Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan, whose party is under investigation for receiving prohibited funds by the election watchdog, on Thursday took a jibe at the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) and said after watching the telethon — hosted by the PTI chief to collect funds for flood victims — the ECP chief would have learned what constitutes foreign funding.

“CEC Sikandar Sultan Raja, if you are listening then [I hope] you have now understood what foreign funding is,” Mr Khan said at a public gathering in Sargodha’s Sports Stadium. He asked the ECP chief if he had “seen the foreign funding” during the telethon and added that most of the money was pledged by overseas Pakistanis.

Mr Khan said the party would have gathered Rs10 billion but there was a shortage of time. During a three-hour-long telethon earlier this week, the former premier managed to gather Rs5 billion for floods survivors as a number of Pakistanis, mostly expatriates, pledged to help the victims.

Will spill the beans

Imran Khan, who was ousted through a parliamentary vote of no-confidence in April, also threatened to reveal the names of people involved in the alleged conspiracy that resulted in his removal and sent the economy into a tailspin.

The PTI chief railed against the ruling coalition and the alleged conspirators who toppled his government for “vested interests”.

Mr Khan said, “I am the captain who would fight harder if pushed against the wall… if they keep on pushing me into a corner, I might expose those who brought the country to the brink of disaster.”

“I have been patient for four months…for the sake of the country. The nation is with me…[and] I can always shut down Islamabad [on one call] but I am not doing it because of the poor economic situation,” Imran Khan thundered.

He alleged that a plan was also hatched to ‘completely eliminate’ him but he had found out and made a tape in case something happened to him wherein he had named those people.

According to Imran Khan, all the economic indicators had been positive when his government was toppled through an alleged conspiracy. “I ask who is responsible for imposing the crooks on the country and creating this chaos,” said Mr Khan while referring to the hyperinflation.

The former premier said efforts were being made to remove him from politics because his rivals were scared, especially after the clean sweep in Punjab by-polls, that if elections took place then the PTI will win a two-third majority. He added that the only way out of the current situation was to hold transparent general elections.

Published in Dawn, September 2nd, 2022

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