Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Senior Vice-President Fawad Chaudhry said Monday a “positive omen” has been witnessed after General Asim Munir took over as the chief of army staff and noted that the party seeks “good working relations” with the establishment.
“Whoever denies this reality will not only harm themselves but also the country,” the ex-federal minister said.
The PTI chief has been on a maligning spree against the former army chief, Gen (retd) Qamar Javed Bajwa, recently and has not only accused him of “betrayal”, but also of ousting his government.
In response to a question regarding talks with the coalition government, Fawad said that negotiations between Minister for Finance and Revenue Senator Ishaq Dar and President Arif Alvi “failed”.
“They [coalition rulers] wanted to disqualify Imran and initiate criminal proceedings against him,” the former minister said.
Castigating the coalition government for not holding snap elections, Fawad said the multi-party Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM) cannot gain political ground despite holding polls later as they had failed on several fronts.
“It has become difficult now to stand by [Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz supremo] Nawaz Sharif and [Pakistan Peoples Party Co-chairman] Asif Ali Zardari,” he added.
‘Imran will not take instructions from Elahi’
Fawad, without naming anyone, further said that former chief of army staff General (retd) Bajwa was told thrice that Imran would de-notify him and his intelligence chief.
“Imran had never thought of denotifying anyone. There’s another issue that each and everything is recorded. If you report things out of context, it seems like a conspiracy is hatching,” he said, defending the audio leaks that have been surfacing recently.
In response to a question about Punjab Chief Minister Parvez Elahi getting “angry” about Imran’s statements regarding the ex-COAS, Fawad said: “Imran will not take instructions from Elahi.”
“Elahi might have issued that statement in anger, but he never says anything to anyone,” he said.
‘Lawmakers getting calls from unknown numbers’
Moving on, the ex-information minister said when his party’s government was ousted in April, the party — without specifying who — was assured that elections would take place.
“But now, we are getting calls from unknown numbers and Imran has also been banned from the media. Some negative things are going on as well, including complaints from our MPs that they are getting calls from unknown numbers,” he said.
He also acknowledged that the lawmakers might also be issuing such statements “just for the sake of establishing their worth”.
The PTI had recently, when the political tensions heightened in Punjab, claimed that its lawmakers were getting calls from “unknown numbers” to switch loyalties and that opposition parties were approaching them and offering bribes to jump the ship.