Former Prime Minister and Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan on Wednesday for the first time used Twitters pace to answer questions from PTI supporters and activists from the PTI’s official Twitter account.
The moderators of this Twitter space were Dr. Arsalan Khalid and Gibran Asif. Gibran Asif was present in Bani Gala along with Imran Khan.
In the first five minutes of Twitter space, 70,000 Twitter users were present in the space, while just before the eleventh minute, when Imran Khan started talking, more than one lakh people had joined the space. By the end of the talk, 160,000 people were in the space, including a large number of Pakistani journalists.
Many questions were asked by Gibran Asif on behalf of the participants while some supporters were given the opportunity to ask questions directly but no journalist was asked.
Imran Khan’s talk on Twitter space was giving the impression that he wanted to end the situation of confrontation with the institutions which has been going on for the last three weeks. Asked about the strategy of the Election Commission to prevent any possible rigging in the upcoming elections, he said that there were people inside the institutions and if one and a half made a mistake, it was not the fault of the entire institution. Referring to the Election Commission, he said that the Election Commission was totally against PTI.
When the next question was asked while mocking the judiciary, Imran Khan once again spoke about the army before the judiciary and asked the party supporters to never speak against the institution of the army. Without an army, this country would not exist. He said that this country needs army more than Imran Khan. According to him, both Asif Ali Zardari and Nawaz Sharif tried to discredit the army, Don Lex and Memo Gate are examples of this.
It may be recalled that anti-military trends were circulating on social media for several days after the fall of PTI government in Pakistan while placards were also seen in PTI meetings pointing to sensitive institutions.
Responding to the role of the judiciary, Imran Khan said that he also wanted to see an independent judiciary. He said that he had gone to jail only once in his life and that was for the independence of the judiciary.
He said he did not want the powerful to be above justice. He said that petty thieves do not harm the country whereas big thieves have to send money out of the country to cover up the theft.
On the question of what is their strategy for the next elections? What would happen to Plan B if disqualified? Imran Khan said that the party could not be disqualified on the ground that there was no weight in the foreign funding case. He said that Pakistan was lagging behind the PTI as it did not see the funding of others. He further added that he was not scared as the fundraising was done properly. Money has been sent to PTI by Pakistani supporters.
He claimed that whenever the fundraising of the three major parties was audited, the record of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) would turn out to be correct.
He termed the PML-N and PPP leaders as crony capitalists and accused them of asking for funds from those whom they rewarded during their tenure so that everyone’s fundraising records should be looked into.
Will we go to the polls again with the electables? On this question, Imran Khan said that many big electables stood with the party while many betrayed for their interests. He said that many people came with him only thinking that joining government would benefit them. “I have decided that this time I will check every ticket myself. It will be based on theory, this time it will not be a mistake,” he said.
Ali Khan Tareen, son of Jahangir Tareen was also present in the audience in this Twitter space.
Asked whether the PTI was ousted on the grounds of economic failure, the former prime minister claimed that the PTI had left the country with record exports, record remittances, record revenue, tax collection and record production of five crops. The country’s industries had resumed and Pakistan had the lowest unemployment rate in the entire subcontinent. That is why the people did not accept this accusation and took to the streets.
He said that it was for the first time in Pakistan that a conspiracy was hatched outside Pakistan and that conspiracy would never have been successful if traitors like Mir Jafar had not been present inside the country. He said that the people had come to know that the most corrupt people have been re-imposed on the country due to which the country is in debt.
It may be recalled that US officials have repeatedly denied allegations that the US conspired or threatened to overthrow Imran Khan’s government. Meanwhile, the DG ISPR had also said in a press conference last week that there was no mention of any foreign conspiracy in the statement of the National Security Committee regarding the diplomatic correspondence.
On election strategy, Imran Khan said that he now understood the science of elections and now he would fight it on the same basis. He said that this time too he would come to the government with full readiness because last time he had no idea how serious the crisis was.
Responding to a question from an overseas Pakistani woman from Sindh, she said that there was fear of Zardari mafia on the citizens of Sindh and now PTI would run its campaign there in full force.
On the question of how to run an election campaign at a time when 95% to 99% of the media is against Imran Khan?
He said that during his three and a half years in power, he kept hearing that he was oppressing the media. He asserted that his confession had been obtained through torture, and that his confession had been obtained through torture.
He said that campaigns were launched against him in the PTI government.
He claimed that even now all the media is blacking out PTI. He alleged that his opponents were linking the media owners with him by giving them financial benefits and also direct funding the journalists.
It may be recalled here that in the Reporters Without Borders ranking, Pakistan is ranked 145th out of 180 countries. Opposition parties in Imran Khan’s early years complained that he was being blacked out in the media.
On Twitter, the former prime minister said that he was expecting only 5% of the people who came out after he was removed from the government. According to him, he understands the dynamics of defeat and victory and he had always seen that sweets are distributed when people leave, but this time it was reversed.
He said that in the scenes after his removal, he had seen the people becoming a nation, which was not only his 26-year political struggle but also the first time in the 75-year history of Pakistan.
He said that just as the Muslims had gathered at Minar-e-Pakistan and demanded their independence, the nation would once again start the independence movement by assembling at Minar-e-Pakistan on Thursday.
On the security concerns in the meeting, he said that no matter what happens, the meeting will take place and he will definitely attend the meeting, life and death are in the hands of Allah.
Addressing the PTI supporters, he said that Lahore Minar Pakistan Jalsa would be a historic Jalsa, those coming late would not be able to find their way so they should reach at the time of Aftar.