Prime Minister Imran Khan on Wednesday called the nation to reach Islamabad on March 27 — when PTI is set to hold a “massive” rally — to tell the world that Pakistanis “stand with the truth and are against corruption.”
“People’s conscience is being auctioned […] it is the duty of people now to stand against evil,” the prime minister said — referring to the no-confidence motion against him — while addressing a PTI rallu (jalsa) in Swat.
The voting session on the opposition’s no-trust motion against the premier is expected to take place in the last days of this month, with the government trying to woo its allies in supporting it and the opposition seeking to break the alliance in the National Assembly.
The prime minister is on a one-day trip to Swat ahead of the second phase of the local body polls in Khyber Pakhtunkwa. After the defeat in the first phase, the PTI has ramped up its campaigns, with PM Imran leading all the rallies in major cities.
The prime minister told the nation that they have to struggle against three “mice” — Zardari, Fazal, and Shehbaz Sharif — for the bright future of the country.
“But I also promise you that I will hunt them down,” he vowed as he called on the people to support him in the cause.
PM Imran Khan claimed that the opposition has started horse-trading to make their no-confidence motion against him a success.
“They want to oust me because they know that if I am in power for another year, all of them will be in jails […] and the first thing they plan on doing after coming into power is to dismantle NAB,” he said.
The premier said the coming days are decisive for the country as all the “thieves” have gathered on the same page and they have given “me a chance to bowl out three wickets in a single ball”.
PM Imran reiterated his challenge and said that during his government’s tenure, the development has been better as compared to the tenure of the previous governments of PPP and PML-N.
Lashing out at the Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM) and JUI-F chief, he said Fazal blamed him to be part of the “Jewish” lobby.
“But the person who was labelled as a part of the Jewish lobby turned out to be the one to get a resolution against Islamophobia passed in the United Nations.”
“I, my Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi, our ambassador Munir Akram, and our Foreign Office were trying to get a resolution against Islamophobia passed in the United Nations for the last three years,” he said.
The premier explained that after the 9/11 attacks in the United States, Western nations had built a narrative that pushed people to consider Islam to be synonymous with terrorism.
“Terrorism has no religion, and despite Islam having no links with terrorism, a perception was created that terrorism is being spread across the world due to terrorism,” the prime minister said.
In a meeting of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) three years ago, the prime minister said he had raised the issue of Islamophobia, and after that, he raised it again at the UN.
“Before that, no Pakistani leader had raised the issue at the UN. Earlier, Pakistanis would come out on the streets and vandalised their own property whenever Islam was insulted in Western countries. At that time, I told them: don’t do this, I will raise this issue internationally,” he said.
The prime minister said he has been receiving felicitation from across the Muslim world after the UN passed the resolution to mark March 15 as the “International Day to Combat Islamophobia”.
The landmark resolution was introduced by Pakistan on behalf of the OIC.
“I want to ask you Fazlur Rehman: In the last 30 years, you were part of every government. Did you ever persuade any Western leader to speak against Islamophobia? Did you even speak to them?”
The prime minister lashed out at Fazl for taking out rallies against him and telling his madrassah students that the premier was part of the “Jewish” lobby.
He took a jibe at former prime minister Nawaz Sharif and told him that when he was holding papers to speak with ex-US president Barack Obama, he should have at least held two papers that mentioned Islamophobia and Kashmir.
“But the slaves, who consider money as their god and worship it, their kanpien tangain gi (legs will tremble) before the American president,” the prime minister said, lashing out at PML-N supremo Nawaz.
PM Imran said he “looks eye-to-eye” with the president of the United States or any other country, as for him, “no one but Allah is God.”
He reiterated that despite repeated US-backed drone attacks in Pakistan, no leader of that time — ex-president Zardari and former premier Nawaz — raised their voice against it, as they were corrupt.
PM Imran said Zardari and Nawaz had embarrassed Pakistan globally due to their corrupt practices.