Imran warns of consequences if ‘conspiracy’ succeeds

Ex-premier claims whatever he took from Toshakhana is on record; denies any record of corruption


Our Correspondent April 18, 2022
Former Prime Minister Imran Khan talking to journalists at his residence Bani Gala in Islamabad on April 18, 2022. PHOTO: TWITTER/ @PTIofficial

ISLAMABAD:

Former prime minister and Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan on Monday said that no future prime minister in Pakistan would be able to withstand US threats if the “foreign conspiracy" to keep him out of power succeeds.

"It will be bad for the country if the nation accepts the conspiracy... India and the US have once again demanded Pakistan to 'do more' and no one is saying anything now," he said during an informal conversation with journalists in Islamabad.

He said that the ‘conspiracy’ was hatched in November and the no-confidence motion was tabled in January. "Our MNAs were called to the US embassy and soon after the US threat our allies also joined the opposition," he added.

Talking about his recent public gatherings, Imran Khan said that the people have come out in huge numbers and no one was expecting it. He said that Pakistan needed its armed forces and he won't say anything that would "harm" the institution.

Also read: Imran Khan would soon be convicted in foreign funding case: PML-N

Toshakhana controversy

The former premier said that his government had changed the policy of retaining foreign gifts and increased the price from 15 per cent to 50 per cent. "Whatever I took from Toshakhana is on record... a president came to my residence and gave me the gift and I deposited it," he added.

He challenged that there was no corruption case or scandal against him and if anyone has any evidence then he should bring it to the fore.

Fresh elections

Imran Khan said that he would personally distribute party tickets in the next elections and no "electable" would be approached this time around. "Giving tickets to allies taught me a lesson that you should not have allies [while forming a government]," he added.

He once again dismissed the military’s claim, saying the establishment came up with three proposals out of which he agreed with holding fresh elections. "How could I agree with the no-confidence motion and resignation [proposals]? As things started to get better, they conspired against me... I had taken that mafia head on which was involved in raising the prices of commodities," he added.

Russia visit

Talking about his historic visit to Moscow, the former prime minister said that before leaving for Russia, he had called Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Qamar Javed Bajwa, who he claimed said that we should visit Russia.

"We talked about [during Russia visit] oil, wheat and gas... Russia was willing to give us oil at 30 per cent cheaper rates... if we did not have an independent foreign policy, this could not have happened but when the country began to prosper economically, the ‘conspiracy’ happened.

"We were told not to go to Russia and vote against it at UN but their (West's) ally India is continuously purchasing oil from Russia," he added.

Also read: Tactics to ensure Elahi becomes CM prove futile

Imran Khan said that Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif was appointing his own people to key positions so that he could "fix the match". "When they play the match they play it by siding with the umpire... I request the nation not to accept them."

To a question, he admitted that filing a reference against Justice (retd) Faiz Isa was a mistake and his government should not have indulged in "unnecessary" confrontation with the judiciary.

The PTI chief said that Farah Khan, a close friend of his wife Bushra Bibi, had no position of power so how could she get engaged in bribing. "If anyone has any evidence, bring it forward," he further said.

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