Reinforcement: Asghar Khan is latest PTI recruit

Published: December 13, 2011
Islamabad, Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa PTI members clash in capital.

Islamabad, Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa PTI members clash in capital.

ISLAMABAD: The PTI has received another shot in the arm – though for the PPP, it might be seen as another sign of aggression.

A veteran politician, thought to be one of the main actors behind the mass movement which culminated in the hanging of Pakistan Peoples Party founder Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, has announced he will join Imran Khan’s Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf.

Air Marshal (Retd) Asghar Khan joined the PTI on Monday, though his high-profile move has already supplied ammunition to skeptics of Imran’s steep rise in the country’s political horizon. The ‘genuineness’ of the personnel in the party has again been challenged.

Newcomer wants petition heard

Asghar, who was heading the little-known Pakistan Tehrik-e-Istaqlal, joined the more prominent PTI at a joint news conference with Imran. Both Khans called upon the Chief Justice Iftikhar Mohammad Chaudhry to immediately take up a decade-old petition filed by Asghar to punish those politicians and political groups who have been receiving funds from the Inter Services Intelligence (ISI).

Figures from the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz are among those groups who have allegedly received money from the ISI in the past to run their election campaigns.  Nawaz Sharif’s party is one of Imran’s major rivals, and both parties have publicly critised each other of late.

“I urge the Chief Justice of Pakistan that the Asghar Khan petition is immediately reopened,” Imran said. “Those political parties who have been getting money from the agencies don’t have any right to rule the country. Neither can they protect the public interest.”

Asghar said that his and Imran’s parties had the same mission of “routing out the rulers who had endangered the sovereignty and integrity of the country.”

“There is panic all around the country. The price hike is touching the skies. The country’s economy is on the verge of collapse. People want change and the PTI is the only party that can provide that,” said Asghar.

Asghar was one of the top leaders at the centre of a mass movement that culminated in what the PPP terms the judicial murder of its first leader Zulfikar Ali Bhutto in 1979.

He called for hanging Bhutto publicly and allegedly wrote a letter to the country’s powerful military to further this case. The retired air force officer has not held a significant position in politics since then.

Imran’s advance met a roadblock on Monday when supporters and opponents of a Khyber-Pukhtunkhwa provincial minister who was also about to join the PTI clashed at the party’s headquarters.

Clash between PTI old and new

Separately, at another news conference Imran Khan was planning to welcome Khyber-Pukhtunkhwa Irrigation Minister Pervez Khattak to the party. This ended abruptly when two rival groups from Nowshera district clashed with stones and sticks, leaving many injured.

PTI’s old workers from Nowshera, led by Sajid Ghumriani, opposed the decision by Imran to accept Khattak in the party’s fold, blaming him for corruption.

The fight went on for almost an hour, forcing Imran to cancel the event and delay the joining of Khattak. PTI’s spokesperson Zahid Kazmi later told media that a committee had been set up to identify those who created the scene. He said that Khattak’s affiliation with the party would be decided once the committee came up with its report within two days.

Published in The Express Tribune, December 13th, 2011.

Facebook Conversations

Reader Comments (78)

  • Tabish Bilgrami
    Dec 12, 2011 - 7:26PM

    Here it goes, as soon as the expansion has started, fights are on now!!!Recommend

  • Dec 12, 2011 - 7:26PM

    It is not”Marshall” It is more commonly spelled “Marshal” with a single “L”Recommend

  • Realist.
    Dec 12, 2011 - 7:34PM

    Imran Khan of the Past (Asghar Khan) & the Imran Khan of today Joined Hands!!
    Two FAILED politicians joined hands today!


  • Dec 12, 2011 - 7:47PM

    Welcome aboard, Sir! It’s an honor!


  • Junaid Khan
    Dec 12, 2011 - 7:50PM

    If Imran Khan loose, we will all loose. And we do not want that.

    So be Optimist if you have a bit of youth left in yourself.

    Anyway… choti moti baten har jagah pe hoti hain… don’t get tensed..Recommend

  • Ch Allah Daad
    Dec 12, 2011 - 7:50PM

    History repeating itself.


  • Bright Light
    Dec 12, 2011 - 7:52PM

    A Big Welcome and Congragulations to honorable Air Marshall (r) Asghar Khan for joining Imran Khan,s party!! Another ‘Cream of the Crop’ joins PTI. Thank God!!
    God Bless!!


  • ManOfTheFuture
    Dec 12, 2011 - 7:53PM

    @Realist.: Two of the most HONEST politicians joined hands today for a better Pakisan of tomorrow !


  • Mk Ghauri
    Dec 12, 2011 - 7:56PM

    Air marshal Asghar is an honest leader ,so is Imran Khan,good luck to them.


  • vaqar
    Dec 12, 2011 - 7:56PM

    @realist. You are living in fantasy land. Change is coming and will be through PTI


  • ZZQ
    Dec 12, 2011 - 7:57PM

    Asgher Khan is one of the few clean politician seen by this country…

    Success unfortunately is being seen here as being able to get to the helm be it by selling ethnicity, sectarianism or even with the support of the Feudal and Industrial Mafia in Pakistan.

    I wish Asgher Khan and Imran best of Luck as to me there’s no point in supporting the already tried corrupt leadership.


  • Dr.Tanwir Ahmad
    Dec 12, 2011 - 8:03PM

    One who started for the “Justice” declared his mission to hang Bhutto and got him hanged(though not at Kohala);and now the person with the same wish for his son in law have joined hands.They are not failed politicians.Establishment succeeds with their help.The corrupt establishment has always succeeded armed with PRODA,EBDO,White papers,Ehtisab bill,NAB,and now with declaration of assets with the help of people like Asghar and Imran.


  • Dec 12, 2011 - 8:04PM

    Good to see PTI is growing day by day :)
    Hope they wont let us down when they get the government.


  • Dec 12, 2011 - 8:05PM

    this keeps on getting better and better


  • Imran Mohammad
    Dec 12, 2011 - 8:20PM


    Why don’t you give alternate to Imran Khan? Give us an alternate plan and guide us, we will follow you. But for that you will have to come out of your comfy seat and stop being arm-chair pundit. Will you sacrifice that? All you and people like you do is criticize for the heck of of it and have no constructive thoughts or ideas.


  • Real Realist
    Dec 12, 2011 - 8:21PM

    It is appreciable that clean people like waleed Iqbal, Asghar Khan, Shafqat mahmood etc are joining hands with Imran Khan. PTI tsunami will sweep every other party insha Allah.


  • dr j tipu
    Dec 12, 2011 - 8:24PM

    asghar khan is a real hero n so is imran…….happy for both, time all honest pakistanis got together against incompetent politicians who we have tried and tested before………..Recommend

  • Dec 12, 2011 - 8:26PM

    Wait and See


  • Seher Siddiqui
    Dec 12, 2011 - 8:30PM

    It seems Imran is getting impatient and things will get further exposed as the elections get closer. We will see many pseudo clean politicians. What we need are competent people. Declaration of assets is important but source of income is more important. Please remember that relevancy and competency are also important.


  • Chengez K
    Dec 12, 2011 - 8:31PM


    Ir was not Asghar Khan who failed……it was Pakistan & its people who failed when they did not elect the only honest politician of his generation.

    The time to make remedy of our past sins has come!!!

    Time for change is now……


  • ihtisham
    Dec 12, 2011 - 8:37PM

    @REALIST: Asghar khan is one of the honest & cleanest politician of pakistan. Every body knows his stance & hard work against corruption in pakistan. He is well respected all over pakistan. He was the one who raised the voice against corruption in the 80,s but the unfair & rigged electoral system of pakistan did not allow him. Insha allah PTI will complete his mission for a fairer & corruption free pakistan. Great addition to PTI.


  • Mughal
    Dec 12, 2011 - 8:41PM

    Now that is one good addition to the party. Asghar Khan has always been known for his clean and issue based politics. I believe Tehrik-e-Insaf will benefit greatly with this decision of Asghar Khan Sahab..


  • Ali
    Dec 12, 2011 - 8:41PM

    @Realist I guess you consider coming into power to be success in politics. Which makes Shaukat Aziz the most successful politician. And I would much rather give my everything to the failed cause of Imran khan than the successful cause of Shortcut Azizs of my nation


  • Syed Kashmiri
    Dec 12, 2011 - 8:45PM

    Way to go Air Marshal. As a Kashmiri from the Indian occupied part, I laud your correct step. We Kashmiris from Indian OCCUPIED kashmir support Imran Khan and I hope he will reciprocate supporting our freedom struggle.


  • Awais
    Dec 12, 2011 - 8:51PM

    @Ch Daad

    there is always first time….
    IK will make the history this time….


  • Masood Khatak
    Dec 12, 2011 - 8:57PM

    The Revolution Of King Khan is coming …

    May God be with you IK


  • Muddassir
    Dec 12, 2011 - 9:04PM

    Yaar jaan choor du na..pls.

    BTW people like have no solution..If you do, pls enlighten us as well.


  • Tonnaires Xenium
    Dec 12, 2011 - 9:28PM

    Great to hear that. Imran Khan is all set to contest a tough, rigged, manipulated and highly controversial election. His enemies are more than his friends. We wish him a good fight, nonetheless :)


  • Realist.
    Dec 12, 2011 - 9:37PM

    Boy O boy!
    Read Asghar Khan’s History & you’ll know where am coming from!
    People used to say the same about Asghar khan!


  • AK
    Dec 12, 2011 - 9:40PM

    Game AWN!


  • Realist.
    Dec 12, 2011 - 9:48PM

    @Real Realist:
    & what about people Like Zafar Iqbal Warraich Musharraf’s interior Minister , rasheed Bhatti, Jazi Khan, Mian mehmood , Mian Azhar , zaheer abbaas Khokhar , Shahid akram bhinder ,abdul aleem khan, Parvez Khattak ?


  • Dec 12, 2011 - 10:13PM

    @chaudary: IA your chaudry ship and malikships will end soon,


  • Salman
    Dec 12, 2011 - 10:17PM

    Good catch by IK.


  • Mirza
    Dec 12, 2011 - 10:30PM

    What a new, young and revolutionary party Imran Khan is leading! Is there any other old discarded establishment person left in the country who has not joined hands with Imran Khan?. If Mansoor Ijaz wants to get clean he can apply for Pakistani nationality and get clean sorry, he is already the clean start witness of SC. More the things change more they stay the same. Recommend

  • Mohammad Ali Siddiqui
    Dec 12, 2011 - 10:39PM

    Sooner and later the entire nation is going to join PTI.

    It’s time for PTI to rise.


  • Ali
    Dec 12, 2011 - 10:42PM

    @Junaid Khan:

    Imran is not the only option. So you should ask yourself to be optimist as well. He is not the first hope and he would not be the last one.

    It will be only clear when election approaches. If Imran proved to be too tough for current politicians. Then he will receive the same tactic which MQM used to silent him. His personal character would be made an excuse to render him ineligible to contest, do not even consider him for post of PM.


    Dec 12, 2011 - 10:48PM

    I am afraid that Imran Khan is allowing too many heavy weights to board his light weight boat that it might sink in the near future.


  • youth karachi
    Dec 12, 2011 - 10:55PM

    Chalo Chalo Mizar e Quaid Chalo 25 th dec.. its time to b united


  • Abbas from the US
    Dec 12, 2011 - 11:08PM

    The solution is quite simple, periodic elections, rejection of parties that fail to deliver.
    Every time Pakistan takes two steps towards democracy and the ultimate goal of transfer of power by an elected political group in government after completing its term, to another group also elected. Either Pakistan breaks up, some extra constitutional method breaks an elected government or there is an Army coup, or an imaginary memogate and that ultimate goal remains a dream.

    I remmember meeting Asghar Khan in 1968 when he had entered politics with great fanfare as the alternate to the establishment personified by Ayub Khan, it is a wonder that four and a half decades later Asghar Khan not having achieved power will join the younger Khan while still trying to gain power, albeit this time discretely supported by the establishment.
    The humor is not lost on an old timer here.


  • Mohammad Awais
    Dec 12, 2011 - 11:21PM

    @Junaid Khan: The future of Pakistan is not attached to Imran Khan or any other single person. The fate of nations changes when the people change their way of thinking. Furthermore an Imran Khan shaking hands with corrupt politicians could come to the power, but he cannot change the situation.


  • Tehreek-Insaaf Fighters
    Dec 12, 2011 - 11:29PM

    90 Year old man ready to bring YOUTH REVOLUTION


  • QB
    Dec 12, 2011 - 11:30PM

    Great news. Asghar Khan has a reputation of honesty that spans over decades. Even the corrupt politicians acknowledge that he is honest. I am more happy that Asghar Khan joined PTI then SMQ.

    Way to go IK.


  • AsliShalsi
    Dec 12, 2011 - 11:57PM

    @Junaid Khan:
    Seriously I do not hold my future with such pawns. Please support IK and maintain statusquo the only thing that will change is opinion about IK. Bringing change with used and tested turn coats, great formula Kaptan. I will still be here when you will go down burning laughing at all your ignorant supporters.


  • Dec 13, 2011 - 12:00AM

    Why every retired force officer is joining PTI? There must be something hidden inside PTI like Illuminati
    God knows better. Mr. Captain, your political game is suspicious now, is there any match fixing?


  • AsliShalsi
    Dec 13, 2011 - 12:01AM

    @Tehreek-e-Insaf FATA:
    Yes wait for more fights to erupt among PTI supporters, but this could seriously be a taste of things to come. When it will come to ticket distribution the Kaptaan will ignore all those who remained loyal to him for fourteen years and will choose turn coats. Than things will get really interesting, one might loose track of all the fights erupting among PTI.
    Now the Vice President of PTI is a renowned Turn Coat; Shah Mehmood Qureshi who just joined and was awarded such an important post. If PTI supporters think that he will stay with PTI after loosing election than they might as well believe in Santa Clause. Not to mention how Kaptaan completely put aside loyalty of all those who served with him for all those years.


  • eraj khan
    Dec 13, 2011 - 12:38AM

    Guys!!… why everyone is being so defensive against REALIST??? Let him say whatever he wants to say… I have been noticing his comments on almost every tribune article, so frankly, i have an impression that he has nothing better to do…
    Pessimism from a single source cannot alter the fortunes of a Tsunami of optimism…there are people who say it cant happen. Let them be in denial till KHAN says, “I came, I saw, I conquered”…..


  • Parvez
    Dec 13, 2011 - 12:58AM

    Very few names with a high credibility rating exist in Pakistani politics and Asghar Khan is one such name. Big endorsement for the PTI.


  • Khurram
    Dec 13, 2011 - 1:10AM

    Air Marshal Asghar Khan is singularly stands out matchless as a brave soldier and an honest politician in the turbulent history of my nation who has always put the national rather than his personal interests in the forefront. It is good news for the people of Pakistan and a great gain for PTI.


  • toor khan
    Dec 13, 2011 - 1:34AM



  • Asad
    Dec 13, 2011 - 1:35AM

    We should not fight each other. Only our enemies want us to fight each other.


  • Meekal Ahmed
    Dec 13, 2011 - 1:55AM

    No doubt that he is one of the finest people that Pakistan has produced. Sadly, he never became a front-line politician and took the reins of the country.


  • Dec 13, 2011 - 2:35AM

    Asghar Khan is a great addition in PTI.


  • Mohammad Ahmed Khan
    Dec 13, 2011 - 3:45AM

    so – the heat is ON


  • Waseem
    Dec 13, 2011 - 3:56AM

    air marshal khan, is a person who doenst know ABC of country, the old man should retire and leave public life.Recommend

  • maestro
    Dec 13, 2011 - 4:02AM

    i dont vote for him but I think the only guy US doesnt want to see in power in pakistan is nawaz shareef. They will be more than happy with Imran khan because he lacks the grit of Benazir and the persona of Nawaz. They know how to chose a mediocre so that they can manipulate him easily. I feel sorry for PTI fan boys, soon to become real sad for their leadership’s dramatic departure from idealistic slogans. btw I am still waiting for imran khan to announce that he is Now gonna pay all his taxes which he evaded by making law an excuse.. the press conference called to announce his own assets was consumed in announcing other’s assets. but I didnt lose my focus. We, the common people, are now used to of such tactics.


  • Syed Kashmiri
    Dec 13, 2011 - 5:43AM

    @Tehreek-Insaaf Fighters:
    Mental age and chronological age are completely different. You are as young as you think or as you feel. However, Air Marshal can bring experience and maturity to the table.


  • Syme
    Dec 13, 2011 - 5:45AM

    Imagine, we all vote for Imran Khan and he become Prime Minister. Now what? How he gonna clear the so called mess? I have read the complete manifesto of PTI, followed ever interview of Khan and supporters , read every comment that comes in my way. I feel pity for my ignorance that why I can’t love Imran Khan, the man with all the magical solutions.
    Tell me, what would be the foreign policy? What would be the economic policy, when you want to break ties with your biggest export partner USA? What would be the defense policy, when you want to sever the ties with your biggest Arms supplier? What would be the health policy, when you talk nothing about it? What would be the education policy, when you have no thoughts about the basic education? What would be the population and planning policy, when you never considered it a do or die situation for Pakistan? What would be the transport policy, when all you can think of is corruption in PIA?
    Tell me, who you are kidding? You want clean politicians only? Is this your only solution? Nawaz Sharif was not born corrupt and neither Zardari was created corrupt. People tend to be dishonest when dishonesty pays. Sadly, in Pakistan, dishonesty pays. I am corrupt and I admit it and I will keep looking for the loopholes to save taxes. I am least bothered about the poor and needy people of my country, why should I pay? tell me why? You can’t make me pay by telling me that my hard earned money will be spent in an honest manner, State must take money from me by legislation that if I don’t pay taxes then I will be punished and then punish me if I fail to comply, even then I will keep looking for way to avoid taxation. This is the basic human psychology.Recommend

  • aysha
    Dec 13, 2011 - 5:48AM

    Those who have been with Imran Khan and PTI for the last 16 years are being ignored, because of new entrants like Mr. Qureshi. somebody who has worked for the party for nearly two decades would stand no chance to lead the foreign ministry in the presence of Mr.Qureshi, who has recently joined hands. I dont think it is fair with the die hard supporters of PTI.
    What is going on. . . it is all too confusing. Is there a deadline for joining PTI or ‘electables’ can join the party just a month before election and beat a long standing party worker at obtaining ticket for election. PTI, pls organize yourself, dont implode before elections and not ignore party loyalists in the wont of electables, this is run of the mill stuff, yet another episode,
    so much for change


  • Syme
    Dec 13, 2011 - 5:51AM

    Lets suppose every politician declare his/her wealth. Now what? Whats the reason for your Mr.Clean? now lets suppose, everyone refuse to declare his wealth? What Imran Khan can do to make them spit out their wealth? He will use police, judiciary, Patwari and Tax officers?
    Utter nonsense. You are not selling dentonic or medicam Shampoo.Recommend

  • Syme
    Dec 13, 2011 - 6:01AM

    The economy is being driven by aid, loan and remittances.If, my young fellas, want to alienate Pakistan then tell me who gonna pay for the Pakistani bills? The nation( youth) which is concerned about loadshedding has nothing to offer. We are all bunch of idiots who are easily placated by termination of loadshedding. Huh
    A hajji sahib can’t ensure the economy of his house, A pious mullah is also dependent on the charity money for his salary, let alone the mosque building. If you think SKMH is sufficent to prove Imran Khan, then ask for Lord Mayo resurrection and Sir Ganga Ram to come and run the country. We need vision and policies.
    If youth want a change then youth must think of the ways to bring the change, betting on horses seldom change the destiny.Recommend

  • Syme
    Dec 13, 2011 - 6:14AM

    Asghar Khan is here for last zillion years, I humbly, ask my young fellas, what he had done so far? A freaking case in supreme court? Did he mobilize the people? did he ever came out of hiding ( not in my youth) to tell the country men about his cause and case. I think, he was a good Air force officer because he gave the doctrine of preemptive attacks but then he entered the war too late and we lost it.
    I don’t get it, why a man who is militarily incompetent but you want him to lead the nation. who can’t make a decision in the heat of war, whether to start an offence or sit back. I must say the defense of Pakistan is in safe hands of stupid Indian Generals, otherwise we are as incompetent militarily as Indians are. They could have easily chewed us, I feel safe, when I see the incompetent military on both sides of border.Recommend

  • wsd
    Dec 13, 2011 - 7:06AM

    One of the honest man of our political history joins another honest man. Some one above commented that Asghar Khan is a failed politician…the truth is that we are a failed state because our Asghar Khans loose and Bhuttos and Sharifs win. It was then and now I hope that our Imran Khan wins and Bhuttos, Zardaries, Chusedries and Sharifs loose………


  • Falcon
    Dec 13, 2011 - 7:15AM

    Please allow me to disagree but most likely you haven’t followed PTI as well as you might think…otherwise you would have some idea about at least their economic policy, energy sector plans, education reforms, healthcare reforms, agricultural reforms, and taxation reforms.


  • A Battered Kashmiri
    Dec 13, 2011 - 7:42AM

    Asghar Khan? All the good politicians won’t win an election. They can if there is a revolution or the masters in America want so.


  • Hassan
    Dec 13, 2011 - 7:52AM

    He didnt really join PTI. He just said he would support Imran Khan, nothing else. ET needs to correct that


  • Dr. Who!
    Dec 13, 2011 - 8:05AM

    I didn’t believe in reincarnation but Malaiks can make miracles happen.
    Made a believer out of me!


  • Adeel Ahmed
    Dec 13, 2011 - 8:39AM

    @Muhammad Awais: You are right that future is not depending on single person but the history tell us that without leader no destiny. You will go thru the history and see the change attached with leader. Even our religion advise us that even if two person accompanying journey, make one the leader. Our politicalleader is Imran Khan whats yours? may be you, yes, you can also be a leader but we need one for destiny.Recommend

  • anon
    Dec 13, 2011 - 1:12PM

    After looking at his stance and scarifices through reading wiki .Asghar Khan should be made Future President


  • Adeel Ahmed
    Dec 13, 2011 - 1:54PM

    @syme, Kindly go thru Pakistan’s political history then come back.


  • Dec 13, 2011 - 3:16PM

    A great man joins another great man.

    Mr. Asghar Khan could be anything but used by establishment looks like a joke to me. He was and is an independent person. God bless these guys to help this nation. If electables are coming to PTI, they need PTI and some how PTI also need them in rural areas and I am sure Imran Khan will tackle them through a system


  • Dec 13, 2011 - 4:01PM

    Asghar Khan has opposed everyone from Ayub Khan to Yahya Khan to Bhutto and Zia ul Haq. He opposed Bhutto when he felt Bhutto was turning into a tyrant himself, he wasnt some establishment stooge trying to bring back martial law… he was under house arrest himself for the five years of Zia’s coup… Read old newspapers… the help the story unravel…,3529636&dq=asghar+khan&hl=enRecommend

  • Tufail Khan
    Dec 13, 2011 - 4:21PM

    It is heartning to know that a clean politician Air Marshal Asghar Khan has joined PTI.The PTI can gain from his experience.Imran khan is trying to make a party for coming election and for that he needs electables so idealy he should have absolutely clean persons but practically he can choose less corrupt people.Muhammad Ali Jinnah has achieved pakistan with the help of “Kotta Sikas”Its the leader that matters.


  • Dec 13, 2011 - 4:28PM

    @Syme: Which war are you talking about?! He’d retired before the 65 war….


  • Shahid
    Dec 13, 2011 - 6:44PM

    @Realist.: Your Leader was also part of the failed leader Recommend

  • Mk Ghauri
    Dec 13, 2011 - 7:45PM

    On the dark horizon there is only a ray of hope ,that is PTI of Imran Khan .To save Pakistan we all ought to work hard for PTI.Ensure your name is on the voter list.


  • zeeshan
    Dec 14, 2011 - 5:35PM

    PTI…i really like this newsRecommend

  • M.Idrees Alvee
    Dec 14, 2011 - 6:07PM

    If Istaqlal and Insaf will be week in the country then it is misfortune.



  • Dr. Khalid
    Dec 14, 2011 - 11:45PM

    asghar khan had been doomed… here comes the doom of imran khan!! sorry khan, u exposed urself a bit too early. wish u were a litle more wiser.


More in Pakistan