ISLAMABAD: Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf chairperson Imran Khan on Monday said former chief justice of Pakistan Iftikhar Chaudhry, former interim Punjab chief minister Najam Sethi and former Supreme Court judge Khalilur Rehman Ramday played key roles in rigging the May 2013 elections.
Addressing a press conference in Islamabad, Imran said that after his 'tsunami' march on March 23, 2013 at Minar-e-Pakistan the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) feared that they will lose the elections and started establishing 'empires' at the election commission.
Explaining how rigging was carried out during the elections, Imran claimed that Justice Ramday hosted a dinner for returning officers (ROs) with the former chief justice as the chief guest.
"Iftikhar Chaudhry convinced the ROs that former president Asif Ali Zardari has destroyed the country and only Nawaz Sharif can save it."
"Najam Sethi made changes according to the wishes of PML-N," Imran alleged, adding that the finance secretary, home secretary and education secretary were not removed from their posts because favours were needed from them to facilitate rigging.
The PTI chief went on to add that Justice Riaz Kayani, an employee of the Sharifs, asked Election Commissioner Tariq Qadri to meet PML-N MNA Pervaiz Malik. Malik asked Qadri to remove Imran's posters from Lahore and upon refusal he was transferred to Karachi.
"Qadri was replaced by Anwar Mehboob who was transferred from Karachi to Lahore in an unlawful move as transfers cannot be made after the election schedule is announced."
Holding Justice Ramday responsible for Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif's early victory speech, Imran said, "when only 15% of the results were in, Ramday asked Nawaz to give his victory speech fearing that the ROs might get scared of the mass rigging they were carrying out and might stop".
Further, Imran claimed Anwar Mehboob asked 200 people to print extra ballot papers, adding that printers in Urdu Bazaar were asked to do the job.
"Millions of ballot papers were printed for 28 National Assembly seats in five divisions of Punjab, namely Lahore, Rawalpindi, Gujranwala, Multan and Faisalabad."
The PTI chairperson also claimed that Admiral Fasih Bokhari wrote a letter to Zardari in which he voiced his fears that pre-poll rigging was happening and that the former chief justice was involved in it as well.
Concluding his press conference, Imran urged the Punjab police to let him and his supporters protest peacefully. He once again clarified that he is not a proponent of martial law and only wants free and fair elections.