When asked about how the country would respond to the government’s performance, Asad Umar said, “They know what people will do to them.”
As the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) held its power show a day earlier at the Minar-e-Pakistan in Lahore, Secretary General Asad Umar declared that the coming week will be a watershed moment in Pakistan’s history.
“The coming week will be a watershed moment in Pakistani history,” the PTI leader said at a press conference with the party’s leadership at the Lahore Press Club on Sunday.
The PTI politician and his colleagues gathered at the press club to condemn the arrests of PTI workers and the government’s attempt to limit the party’s major event in Lahore following the decision of the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) to postpone elections in Punjab.
Umar went on to say that despite the government instilling fear in the public, the arrests that followed, and the placement of containers throughout the city, the people of Lahore came out to support the party’s rally.
Umar condemned the government for mismanaging the country’s economy and the resulting sufferings, claiming that people are dying while queuing for flour.
He forewarned the government about the public’s reaction to their performance. “They know what people are going to do to them.”
Meanwhile, the PTI’s Senior Vice-President, Fawad Chaudhry, claimed that 2,000 people had been arrested as part of the ongoing wave of arrests of his party’s workers. “People are being picked up and taken from Lahore. Azhar Mashwani has gone missing. Three days have passed.”
He claimed that there is no place in Pakistan for enforced disappearances.
The PTI stalwart added that the “entire city was blocked with containers” in response to the “government’s steps to curtail the PTI’s power show” a day earlier.
“Lahore’s entry and exit routes were closed,” he explained.
PTI Chairman Imran Khan praised his party’s supporters for showing up at the rally’s venue, Minar-e-Pakistan, saying that despite all kinds of obstacles, people showed up in large numbers.
“Those in power must understand that [blocking roads and pathways with shipping containers] cannot stop people who want true independence,” he said, adding that fear was spread in order to derail the public meeting.
Fawad also claimed that the actions of the Pakistan Democratic Movement-led government — a ruling coalition of 13 political parties — would result in Pakistan being placed back on the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) list.
Pakistan was removed from the Paris-based intergovernmental body’s grey list in October of last year. The country, which was added to the list of untrustworthy jurisdictions in June 2018 due to “strategic counter-terrorist financing-related deficiencies,” is no longer subject to the increased monitoring process.
He also stated that the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) and the Anti-Corruption Establishment have issued notices (ACE).
While commenting on Pakistan’s ongoing political crisis, the politician insisted that there is no other option but to implement the Constitution.
During the press conference, the former information minister accused Interior Minister Rana Sanaullah of “running a gang” and questioned him about his political views.
In response to President Arif Alvi’s letter to Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif, the party’s senior vice-president stated, “Not a single answer has been given to the question raised by the president.”
On Friday, the president wrote to Prime Minister Shehbaz, urging him to ensure that the Supreme Court’s orders regarding the general elections in Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa were followed (KP). In response, the premier wrote to President Alvi that his letter read like a PTI press release, which is “blatantly partisan in nature” and supports Imran Khan’s “one-sided and anti-government” views.
Meanwhile, Fawad stated that all eyes are now on the country’s highest court. He went on to say that the government is now conducting politics based on fear. “We’re asking you to do your own politics while allowing us to do ours.”