Brigadier (retd) Ali Khan, who is accused of plotting to topple the democratic government and mount attacks on the army headquarters, had met the chief of banned group Hizb-ut-Tahrir for Palestinian territory while he was conspiring to overthrow the government and create Islamic caliphate, the BBC quoted a senior military officer as saying.
According to Brigadier Amir Riaz, head of 111 Brigade, Brig Ali had disclosed that HuT has prepared a new constitution and a shadow government for Pakistan and that the group was ready to take over anytime.
Brigadier Amir Riaz, who has now been promoted to the rank of Major-General, has been introduced by the prosecution as a witness against Brig Ali, who is currently facing court martial proceedings.
Brig Riaz (now Maj-Gen) said in a statement that a few months back Brig Ali had expressed distrust in Pakistan’s incumbent civil and military leaderships and had called for establishing Islamic caliphate in the country. According to the prosecution documents, Brig Ali had allegedly told his former colleagues that he had friends in the HuT and that he had met the group’s chief for Palestinian territory.
“Brig Ali told me that HuT could establish a real caliphate which could also ensure good governance in Pakistan. He also told me that HuT has prepared an alternative constitution and a shadow government which could take over anytime,” Brig Riaz said.
Brig Riaz, who has been named as a witness by the prosecution, was promoted to the rank of Maj Gen following his statement against Brig Ali, according to the BBC report.
Brig Ali believed that HuT could establish caliphate in Pakistan only if the military handed over power to the group, said Brig Riaz. And this was not possible until the incumbent military brass was removed.
Brig Riaz said that he knew his former colleague Brig Ali as an emotional person – but his statement could not be brushed aside as his emotionalism.
In his statement, he further said Brig Ali had told him that some elements in Pakistan Air Force were part of the HuT conspiracy and they would mount an air raid on the General Headquarters with F-16 fighter jets during a corps commanders’ conference to eliminate the army brass.
He claimed that Brig Ali had asked him to take over key buildings in Islamabad following such an attack. But he said that he had turned down the offer to become part of the conspiracy and to cooperate with Brig Ali.
After being disappointed in Brig Riaz, Brig Ali tried to recruit other army officers. He seemed in a hurry to execute his plot because his retirement from service was nearing.
Published in The Express Tribune, March 7th, 2012.