The Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) will start a campaign of rallies in support of the judiciary from June 18 with a procession led by party chief Imran Khan in Lahore, said PTI Vice Chairman Shah Mehmood Qureshi on Saturday.
All regional PTI offices will also organise rallies in major cities and districts, Qureshi told a press conference, where he was accompanied by PTI Central Information Secretary Shafqat Mahmood and Punjab Information Secretary Andaleeb Abbas.
Qureshi said that the Malik Riaz case was a plot against the independent judiciary. He said that the PTI had always backed the judiciary and would do all it could to defend the institution.
He condemned the “framing of the judiciary by Malik Riaz”, which he thought was “as serious an attack” on the judges as when General Pervez Musharraf tried to remove the chief justice of the Supreme Court.
He said that “backstage actors” were targeting not just the chief justice, but the entire institution.
He said that the “ruling elite” had instigated the “plot” in revenge for the many Supreme Court judgements that had gone against it, particularly in the prime minister’s contempt case. “The recently aired footage of a TV interview has revealed the PM’s House’s connections with Malik Riaz,” he said.
Qureshi said the government had already politicised institutions like the National Accountability Bureau and the Federal Investigation Agency so that they had totally failed to provide accountability.
Qureshi, a former foreign minister, said an independent judiciary and an independent media were the “only hope” for the citizens of Pakistan. He said the PTI would not tolerate the undermining of the judges because an independent judiciary was an imperative for free, fair and impartial elections.
He invited all parties “not involved in the Malik Riaz case” to join the PTI in their struggle to protect the Supreme Court. He urged civil society and the general public to join the PTI campaign.
Published In The Express Tribune, June 17th, 2012.
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