by Safdar Rasheed and M Rafique Goraya
LAHORE: Challenging prime minister Nawaz Sharif”s PML-N in its own stronghold, Pakistan Tehrik-e-Insaf chief Imran Khan accused the party of taking shelter behind court orders. He was addressing a huge public meeting at Samanabad Doongi ground in connection with election campaign of NA-122 here Sunday evening.
Elaborating his point, he said that Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif had ruled Punjab for four and a half years during his 2008 to 2013 tenure under a stay order while “PML-N MNA Saad Rafique too has been sitting as Railway Minister for the past six months after getting a stay order from court”.
He claimed that the ruling party was planning to carry out rigging in the 11th October bye-election of NA-122 at women polling stations.
“I advise my tigresses to remain alert in order to foil PML-N”s plans to rig the bye-election. PTI Chief Organizer Punjab Chaudhry Sarwar had given training to party workers to check any attempt of rigging. We want an army official to accompany the ECP officials when the boxes are being transferred to the ROs,” he said.
Khan challenged the PML-N”s popularity in Lahore, saying the ruling party has failed to hold a single rally at Minar-e-Pakistan. “We have done it thrice in two years, something PML-N has never been able to do even once,” he noted. Lashing out at what he described as rampant corruption in Punjab, he said around 180 cases were still pending with the National Accountability Bureau (NAB).
“Of 180 cases, 12 are against Nawaz Sharif, one against Shahbaz Sharif and one against Finance Minister Ishaq Dar. but since the prime minister and opposition leader Khurshid Shah jointly selected the NAB chairman cases against them are still pending,” he maintained, Imran was confident that PTI is well-prepared to win the bye-poll in NA-122.
“I have seen the passion of people who have now been awakened. We will defeat Ayaz Sadiq and celebrate the start of a new Pakistan on the night of October 11,”
Imran also criticised the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP), saying the bye election was being carried out once again under supervision of the flawed system that held the ”rigged elections” in 2013.
“I waited for two and a half years to get justice and what was revealed after that? Out of 184,000 votes 53,000 were bogus but not a single person has been indicted for this crime,” Imran said while lamenting that the same member of ECP Punjab was arranging the NA-122 by-election.
He said there was a need to change the system.
Source: Business Recorder