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LAHORE: Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan claimed former army chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa (retd) had condemned Russia for invading Ukraine against his (Imran’s) wish just to please the Americans.

While addressing intellectuals through a video link here on Monday, the former Prime Minister believed that in the absence of rule of law and justice system, a country could not have an independent foreign policy as a handful of people in power would compromise the country’s sovereignty for personal gains.

“In the past, our foreign policies were designed to ‘please’ other countries. However, my government wanted to improve relations with Russia to buy cheap wheat and fuel; during my visit to Russia, I made a deal with Russian President Vladimir Putin of buying oil at the rate that was being offered to India. When I returned to Pakistan, our army chief (Bajwa) asked me to condemn Russia for invading Ukraine,” he claimed.

IK steps up attacks on Bajwa

“Surprised by his demand, I pointed out to him that India did not condemn Russia for its action and neither had it stopped buying cheap oil from them despite being a strategic ally of the US. Hence, I suggested him that we should also remain neutral,” he added.

He claimed that astoundingly, the next day a grade-22 officer (the army chief) condemned Russia for the invasion while addressing a security seminar; “while we were trying to buy cheap oil from Russia, our army chief condemned it to please America. The people of Pakistan suffered because of this as escalated international oil prices pushed our inflation rate from 12 percent to 30 percent whereas India benefited from cheap Russian oil as its inflation rate slid from 7.5 percent to 5.5 percent,” he added.

He averred that he decided to approach Russia in the interest of the people. “Why should we take a side in another country’s fight? Our only concern should be our people’s interests. Bear in mind, when a foreign policy is made to please others, it is done at the expense of our people’s interests. Today, we are seeing the outcome of this flawed foreign policy in the shape of economic meltdown and the rising cost of living,” he added.

Khan further said that Pakistan could not progress with dual standards of law. He laid down the importance of establishing a just system in society, terming it necessary for unleashing the true potential of its people; “the West was prosperous because of rule of law. Existence of a just system differentiates a civilised society from an animal society; in the latter case ‘the might is right’ prevails while a civilised society is governed by rule of law, which makes both powerful and weak people equal before the law,” he added.

He pointed out that without rule of law, democracy cannot exist in Pakistan and hence the country would not progress. Citing an example, he claimed that the government does not want to hold elections in the country within 90 days which was the stipulated time in the Constitution. “Look at the circus in Pakistan; the government says that it has no money to hold the polls which is a contravention of the Constitution,” he said.

He also noted that in the absence of a just system, the powerful people in Pakistan get NRO while comparing it with the West where the powerful people were ‘easiest’ to catch if they commit corruption. Meanwhile, the PTI decided to give priority to the loyal party workers who stood by the party in tough times for distribution of party tickets for the upcoming elections. As per the sources, the PTI chief chaired a meeting of the South Punjab Parliamentary Board to deliberate on the distribution of party tickets in south Punjab. PTI leaders Asad Umar, Pervez Khattak and others attended the meeting.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2023

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A. Tahir Feb 14, 2023 06:04am
Million dollar question: How come a mediocre person like Bajwa becomes COAS?
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Saeed Feb 14, 2023 07:48am
Sad
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Truthisbitter813 Feb 14, 2023 09:08am
The same oil deal that went ahead anyway, under the leadership of politicians whom this idiot branded traitors? Yeah, good that the media keeps giving this attention ****** his oxygen, lest he may shut up.
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Usman Feb 14, 2023 10:47am
IK behaving like a typical Pakistani divorcee. All the time telling bad things about ex spouse.
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Pakistani1 Feb 14, 2023 11:15am
IK confirms that he took steps on advice of Bajwa. He does not show any remorse for the benefits he accrued due to the patronage and the harm he did to the relations with multiple countries. Does this show a stable person fit for high office?
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Pakistani1 Feb 14, 2023 11:16am
@A. Tahir, how did a Narcissistic person like IK become PM?
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