PTI dissidents issued show-cause notices

Imran says disgruntled lawmakers will soon return to party-fold

Our Correspondent March 19, 2022
A file photo of dissident PTI lawmakers present at Sindh House in Islamabad. SCREENGRAB


The Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) issued on Saturday show-cause notices to dissident lawmakers for joining the opposition parties, who brought no-confidence motion, as Prime Minister Imran Khan expressed the hope the estranged lawmakers would soon return to the party-fold.

In the notices, the ruling party reminded the dissidents that they were bound to follow the directions issued by the PTI as its member. It asked the lawmakers to explain within seven days about the giving the impression that they were about to leave the party.

“It is abundantly clear from the provisions of Article 63-A(1) that you are bound to follow the directions issued by PTI as you are a member… and continue to be bound to follow the directions…” said the show cause notice issued to PTI National Assembly member MNA Afzal Khan Dhandla.

Earlier this week, private TV channels aired footages of some PTI lawmakers, staying at the Sindh House. A few members, including Dhandla, spoke to the media and expressed their lack of confidence in Prime Minister Imran Khan. In one interview MNA Raja Riaz said that 24 PTI lawmakers were staying there.

Prime Minister Imran also spoke about the dissident lawmakers in his speech on Saturday at the ground-breaking ceremony of 38.3-kilometre long Rawalpindi Ring Road Project. Without giving details, he said that estranged lawmakers would soon return to the party.

“Time has changed, as there is no more room for Changa Manga politics,” he said, in reference to the opposition. “I can see the growing public anger over horse-trading… most of them will return to the party because they are watching this public reaction,” he said.

Read ‘24 PTI lawmakers’ surface from Sindh House amid horse-trading allegations

Without mentioning the Friday’s incident, wherein some PTI activists raided the Sindh House and knocked down its gate, Imran advised the party workers to hold peaceful demonstrations and avoid confrontation with the opposition, saying that peaceful protest was a legal right.

The prime minister stated that it was necessary for the public to differentiate between virtue and evil. He underscored the need for the public to realise what was happening in the country now. “The public should realise the politics of ill-gotten wealth,” he said.

“There is a market to purchase conscience of the people through illegal pelf. The police force was summoned from the Sindh province to guard the Sindh House where illegal activities were happening,” he added. “Is it righto changed loyalties after accepting the dirty money!” he posed a question.

“Huge bags of money have been doled out to purchase the loyalties of the people [MANs]. The public should witness this kind of politics, which has always pushed the country behind in terms of progress and prosperity,” he opined.

Speaking about the PTI public rally in D-Chowk on March 27, the prime minister said that there would be a massive gathering of the people to give a clear message of “siding with the virtue and denouncing the vice”. He accused the opposition leaders of looting the national wealth and sending it abroad.

“These things did not happen in a democratic system,” the prime minister said. In the West, such as the United Kingdom where he spent most of his life, the prime minister added, there was no place for the corrupt elements.

Congratulating the residents of Rawalpindi, Imran expressed the confidence that the Ring Road project would bring vital changes in the whole area, through vast connectivity, by saving travel time and spurring business activities.

The prime minister noted that an unchecked expansion of megacities had been creating a myriad of issues from availability of cultivable land to provision of safe drinking water and proper waste disposal system.

He said that he had directed the chief secretaries to prepare master plans for big cities which would be submitted shortly. He observed that the unplanned expansion of cities had also shrunk space for the green areas. “Planning is necessary to save the agricultural lands for the future generations.”

About the Nullah Leh project, the prime minister announced that it would be launched within next three weeks as Rawalpindi city had witnessed expansion with traffic congestion issues. The project would be like rejuvenation of Rawalpindi by transforming it into a modern city.

The prime minister said through the projects like the Lahore Ravi city and the Central Business District, the government had been utilising the dead capital, which would bring billions of dollars investment and huge employment opportunities.

Speaking on the occasion, Interior Minister Sheikh Rashid criticised the opposition, saying that “the corrupt, looters and absconders” could not defeat Imran Khan. “It is my firm belief that Imran Khan will emerge successful,” he added. Aviation Minister Ghulam Sarwar Khan and Punjab Chief Minsiter Usman Buzdar also addressed the ceremony.

Meanwhile, Prime Minister Imran on Saturday shared a message for PTI workers and supporters, on his Twitter handle, assuring them that “the crooks and traitors of our country are falling in a trap”. He said: "Message to my workers and supporters: The crooks and traitors of our country are falling in a trap," he tweeted, along with a quote from renowned Sufi saint and Persian poet Shams Tabrizi.



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