Information Minister Marriyum Aurangzeb, who is in London with a PML-N delegation led by Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif, was heckled by overseas Pakistanis apparently supporters of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) at a roadside café.
Maryam Aurangzeb met PTI protesters in London. pic.twitter.com/dO9ILcag8V— Ihtisham Ul Haq (@iihtishamm) September 25, 2022
The short video clips of the incident, which went viral on social media, showed that a handful of the alleged PTI supporters surrounded the information minister while she was having a soft drink inside the café.
In one of the videos, the unruly woman can be heard hurling abuses at Marriyum while others were recording her video with the minister staying calm and using her mobile phone.
In another video, the information minister can be seen interacting with one of the women supporters. “This attitude is harmful to the image of Pakistan. You asked three questions from me and I have answered them all. This is a way of having a decent conversation,” the minister told the protester.
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In response to the woman protester question, Marriyum said former prime minister Nawaz Sharif granted voting rights to overseas Pakistanis in 2017 and added that the right is still intact as recent legislation had only revoked the option of voting through electronic voting machines (EVMs).
Later in a tweet she blamed PTI Chairman Imran Khan for the incident saying, “Sad to see the toxic impact IK’s [Imran Khan] politics of hate & divisiveness has had on our brothers & sisters. I stayed & answered each & every question they had.”
The info minister added, “Sadly, they are victims of IK’s propaganda. We will continue our work to counter IK’s toxic politics & bring people together.”
Sad to see the toxic impact IK’s politics of hate & divisiveness has had on our brothers & sisters. I stayed & answered each & every question they had. Sadly, they are victims of IK’s propaganda. We will continue our work to counter IK’s toxic politics & bring people together https://t.co/KEgOPa5Y3p— Marriyum Aurangzeb (@Marriyum_A) September 25, 2022
Reacting to the incident, PML-N leaders condemned the incident and appreciated Marriyum for patiently enduring the rowdy behaviour of the alleged PTI supporters.
“I salute my sister Marriyum Aurangzeb for her grace and composure in the face of such harassment and baseless lies from that uncouth woman (who can be heard but thankfully cannot be seen),” said outgoing finance minister Miftah Ismail in a tweet.
Calling the information minister ‘Sherni’ [lioness], Planning Minister Ahsan Iqbal said, “Most deplorable, condemnable and shameful act by PTI hooligans. These were Hitler’s tactics. Imran is a fascist and turning his followers into street gangs. Well done Marriyum Aurangzeb you showed grace & faced them boldly.”
Other PML-N leaders and journalists also echoed similar views on Twitter.
Reacting to the incident, journalist Ihtishamul Haq asked Marriyum Aurangzeb “to ask herself that why is she facing all this and for what?”.
Other netizens concurring with his view defended the incident saying “politicians will face wrath of public for their actions”.
Politics is a very cruel game. I don’t know how @Marriyum_A faced all this. 20 people started screaming on her in public. I witnessed everything. As a man I may not have faced, what she has faced as a woman. She must ask herself that why is she facing all this and for what?— Ihtisham Ul Haq (@iihtishamm) September 25, 2022
When one herself is used to do such things, they get rid of any conscious around dignity or self respect.— Basit Habib (@BasitHabibMalik) September 25, 2022
Likes of her will try to cash it for personal political gains, rest assured. pic.twitter.com/3u4lDH6Xsv
Lying is "normal" in Pakistan. If politicians mislead the public, they will eventually face their wrath. Of course no one deserves to be embarrassed in public like that, but if you represent criminals, what will you expect!— Zeeshan Hanif (@The_3rd_Umpire) September 25, 2022
"Honesty Is The Best Policy"
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