Failing to control the growing unrest due to the protest march launched by Imran Khan, the Shehbaz Sharif government has been forced to call in the army to protect the Red Zone
PTI Chairman Imran Khan, who was ousted from power by a no-trust vote held a long protest march on May 25 against the present government, demanding the dissolution of the National Assembly and to conduct the next general election and invited people to join in large numbers.
The city turned into a battleground on Wednesday as multiple scuffles took place between the police and PTI marchers after Imran Khan and his convoy entered the city and started marching towards the D-Chowk despite the Supreme Court’s order to hold a rally at a ground between H9 and G9 areas of Islamabad.
Imran Khan warned his supporters would not vacate D-Chowk until a date for fresh polls was announced by the Shehbaz Sharif government. To control the law-and-order situation in the federal capital, the Pakistan government deployed troops of the Pakistan army in the Red Zone to protect important government buildings including the Supreme Court of Pakistan, Parliament House, Presidency, Prime Minister’s Office and others. The decision was taken under Article 245 of the Constitution of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, reported the Geo TV.
Earlier, Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif-led Pakistan Muslim League Nawaz (PML-N) government rejected the demands of ousted former prime minister and Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) chief Imran Khan for holding re-elections in the country and said that the government will complete its tenure.
PML-N and its allies announced that the current setup will complete its tenure till August 2023 and the general elections would be held at the stipulated time next year, reported Express Tribune quoting sources.
Imran Khan gave the Shehbaz Sharif government a six-day deadline for announcing elections and dissolving assemblies warning that if the deadline is not met he would return to the capital with the “entire nation”.
“I had decided that I will sit here until the government dissolves assemblies and announces elections, but of what I have seen in the past 24 hours, they (govt) are taking the nation towards anarchy,” he said while addressing the protesters at Islamabad’s 9th Avenue.
Failing to control the growing unrest due to the protest march launched by Imran Khan, the Shehbaz Sharif government has been forced to call in the army to protect the Red Zone as former Pakistan Prime Minister and PTI chief entered Islamabad in the early hours of Thursday.
Imran praises India, attacks Sharif on oil prices
While invoking the name of India, former Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan yet again slammed the Shehbaz Sharif government after the federal government hiked the petrol and diesel prices by PKR 30 per litre.
While criticizing the government, the Imran said this “insensitive government” has not pursued the deal made by the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) party with Russia for 30 per cent cheaper oil. He went on to praise India, saying strategic ally of the US has managed to reduce fuel prices by PKR 25 per litre by buying cheaper oil from Russia.
“Nation starting to pay the price for Imported govt’s subservience before foreign masters with 20% /Rs30 per litre hike in petrol and diesel prices – the highest single price hike in our history. The incompetent & insensitive Govt has not pursued our deal with Russia for 30% cheaper oil,” Imran Khan said in a tweet.
“In contrast, India, strategic ally of the US, has managed to reduce fuel prices by PKR 25 per litre by buying cheaper oil from Russia. Now our nation will suffer another massive dose of inflation at the hands of this cabal of crooks,” he said in another tweet.
Pakistan on Thursday raised the prices of petroleum products by PKR 30 per litre, stating that the decision was taken to ensure the revival of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) programme.
Admitting that Shehbaz Sharif’s government was aware of the political repercussions of the decision, he added, “we will face criticism but the state and its interests are important to us and it is necessary for us to save it.”
Furthermore, Ismail said Pakistan could have gone in the “wrong direction” if the steps were not taken. The decision was a tough one for Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif, he added.