LAHORE: Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan has said that he was ready to form a committee for talks with the ‘powerful quarters’ and he was ready to step aside if they convince him that his exit from politics would benefit the country.

“I am forming this committee and I seek two things; if they convince me that they have a solution and the country could function better without Imran Khan, or they convince me what benefit Pakistan could gain from holding elections in October. Convince us on these two things and I am ready to retreat for the sake of the country,” the former PM said while addressing the PTI supporters through a video link here on Wednesday.

He averred that he was ready to give another chance to dialogue; he would announce the committee on Thursday (today) to hold a dialogue with those who have power in the country. “However, I am still unable to comprehend how Pakistan would benefit if the elections were held in October,” he added.

More than 10,000 workers arrested, claims Imran

He also appealed to the judges of the Supreme Court of Pakistan to step in and save the country’s democracy from the meltdown. “The Constitution has been breached after May 14 and now you were our last hope; the nation was looking at you and your unity was very important for the public. It was up to you now to save this country and thus take a stand otherwise history would never forgive you. Pakistan was becoming a banana republic,” he claimed.

He pointed out that ‘they’ were destroying the country in the process of taking him out. He outlined the economic woes of the country, saying the rupee was losing its value fast and the government was using all the taxpayers’ money to pay interests. “Could not ‘they’ see that the government does not have a roadmap; Pakistan was drowning,” he asked.

Talking about the ‘persecution’ of his party leaders, workers and supporters, Khan said that fundamental rights have been suspended in the country. “Over 10,000 workers of his party have been put in jail while around 25 innocent protestors were killed by the law enforcement agencies. Even the prisoners of war have some fundamental rights, but my workers have been denied,” he claimed.

“Today, human rights violations were on the rise, which was never seen before in the country. The situation was so ugly that the detainees could only come out of the jail after speaking the magic words, ‘I am quitting the PTI’, in front of the media,” he said.

Without specifying, the former Prime Minister claimed that ‘they’ have benefited from the arson at the Lahore Corps Commander House and used it to launch a crackdown on his party. “Those behind crackdown need to get their heads checked; is it benefiting Pakistan or bringing a change in the country? Could they eliminate PTI by forcefully asking the PTI leaders to leave the party? Whoever thinks so needs to get their heads checked,” he said, adding that oppression could not suppress an idea or vision. However, he asked his party loyalists to show restraint and be patient, as the dark time would pass soon.

He was confident that the ongoing ‘oppression’ would not eliminate the PTI but would only increase its popularity. “I am confident that my ticket-holders would win the next elections,” he added.

The PTI chief also questioned the silence of human rights organisations and journalists, asking why the champions of democracy were sitting idle and silently seeing the destruction of democracy in the country; they should realise that they could also face a similar persecution tomorrow; no one would remain safe.

He castigated the government for shutting down the internet services in his area, saying its purpose was to suppress his voice; however, he would use all available resources to send his message to his supporters in future. He made a pledge with his supporters to continue with his struggle for ‘freedom’; “I am ready to face all consequences and would stand till the last ball”, adding that it was better to die than accept ‘slavery’.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2023

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Truthisbitter813 May 25, 2023 09:48am
How pathetic, but this is what the end of a con gone wrong looks like. I have to say though; it is satisfying to see these pharaohs of our time, particularly the one pictured, grovel at the boots of the establishment. Too little, too late when reckoning beckons at the door.
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Notsurprised May 25, 2023 10:52am
But you said you cannot negotiate or talk to 'ghaddar', 'chor', 'imported hakoomat', etc etc. Now what changed? A man's principles should not only stand in good times but bad. But those who change their stance under pressure are truly without character and spine. I pray the youth of this country wakes up from the trance this conman has put them under.
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John May 25, 2023 11:09am
Compromised generals have compromised the future of the country through their blunder after blunder! Hold elections and let people decide their future! The role of generals in politics must end to save Pakistan;s future! All crooks and corrupt politicians and compromised generals should leave Pakistan ASAP and let 220 million people build their lives for a better future!
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Safdar May 25, 2023 11:20am
Nothing is more powerful than an idea whose time has come; may seem like an ambitious wish. But no; it’s a proven reality of human history.
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Tulukan Mairandi May 25, 2023 11:31am
Looks like he has finally been beaten into submission
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Aamir Latif May 25, 2023 12:16pm
He needs to be brain washed, he need to talk to politicians not establishment to end current stalemate in the country... He is still in the mind set of cohersing establishment to come back to power... What a mind....????
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KU May 25, 2023 12:51pm
He should step back, keep quiet and let the government do its thing. He need not reach out to anyone or appease anyone. Very soon the nation will confront a new economic reality, and know the difference between fact versus fiction.
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Ajamal May 25, 2023 06:54pm
He came in as a clean alternate, but in reality proved destructive, corrupt and incompetent. Estab made a pathetic choice, wasted 15 years, and put back country 30 years. Estab need to live with political forces, instead of lab experiments.
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