ISSN 2330-717X

Pakistan: The Dilemma Of Former PM Imran Khan’s Foreign Conspiracy Mantra – OpEd

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The former Prime Minister of Pakistan, Imran Khan, started preaching and spreading the mantra of American conspiracy when Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM) brought a vote of no-confidence against him in the parliament and succeeded in ousting Khan on April 10 2022. PDM is a political movement founded in September 2020 as a coalition of opposition parties against PM Imran Khan, accusing his regime of poor governance, political victimization of opponents, and mismanaging the economy and foreign policy. It consists of major opposition parties, namely Pakistan Muslim League Nawaz (PML-N), Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP), Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam (JUIF), Awami National Party (ANP), and Pakhtunkhwa Milli Awami Party (PMAP). However, former opposition at many stances since the start of the government of Pakistan Tehrik-e-Insaaf (PTI) in 2018 has repeatedly said they would bring the no-confidence motion against the selected government (according to PDM) of Imran Khan. The PDM, from the start, accused Imran Khan as selected who came into power with the help of the establishment and rigged the election.

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Imran Khan accused the PDM of foreign conspiracy short after they brought the vote of no-confidence against him. After Khan’s ousting, he blamed PDM that they, with the help of America, conspired against his government to remove him from power. According to Khan, America was very fearful of his increasing popularity and passion; therefore, it conspired against him with the help of PDM. Thus, he repeatedly calls the present democratic government an imported government. When a democratic process of no-confidence vote removed Khan, he requested the Army Chief to intervene and save his government. However, the army chief refused to go against the legal and democratic process of the country. He also requested the chief justice of Pakistan to intervene and save his government. However, the chief justice also refused to go against the constitution and democratic structure of the country.

Shaikh Rasheed, the interior minister in the government of Pakistan Tehrek-e-Insaf, always calls the army chief, DG ISI, and DG ISPR for his and PTI’s government help. However, they all refused to go against the democratic process. However, it is a well-known fact and very famous in the country how he becomes the part of most governments and who help him be the part of most of the governments in the country. Similarly, PTI’s governor of Punjab, the biggest province of Pakistan by population, wrote a letter to the Chief of Armed staff to take action against the elected chief minister Shahbaz Sharif and the government of Punjab. All these actions and policies of Imran Khan and his government were considered unconstitutional and against the democratic process of the country by most of the educated class of the country, intellectuals, scholars, and international forums.

Although Khan raised one point about the Members of the National Assembly (MNAs) of his party who became against his government can be thought over, he made a point that the party should cancel the membership of those MNAs as they are the MNAs of PTI and support the PDM. He accused them of bribes, sold out at the hands of PDM, and became part of a conspiracy. In this regard, there should be a law that if an MNA from one party wants to support or give the vote to another party in parliament, it should not be allowed until they again contest an election with the ticket of the party he wants to support or vote. They should not be allowed to vote against their party because they have come into parliament with the votes of a particular party. People have given them a say in the name of the party and its leader. Hence, there is a dire need for this law to be passed because it favours all concerned parties that become part of the election

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When it comes to the scheme, a person, group or government often spreads the news of a conspiracy to hide their involvement in the plot. It seems that a similar is the case with Imran Khan; either by blaming the PDM, Khan wants to divert the attention from the foreign funding case against his party, or he wants to expose the conspiracy of PDM. The foreign funding case has been pending since November 14, 2014. PTI founding member Akbar S Babar filed it and alleged financial irregularities in funding the party from Pakistan and abroad. Moreover, Khan says his party has got the majority of votes as a single party in the election of 2018; therefore, it is the right of the PTI to form a government. However, Khan has his logic for everything and does not accept the things against his self created reason.

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Many parties in Pakistan contest elections. If some of these parties made an alliance and got the majority of seats out of 342 seats, then legally and constitutionally, they have a right to make a government; the PDM also did the same. Yet, Khan has not brought solid proof of foreign conspiracy, he only talks about a letter written by the Then-ambassador of Pakistan to the U.S, but American officials have denied and said there is no truth to these allegations. Although, Khan has created a dilemma in the minds of the people of the country concerning the foreign conspiracy. Thousand of people all over Pakistan who support PTI believe that there is a conspiracy to remove Khan. But PDM has repeatedly denied the accusation of Khan and said he wanted to create a complex situation in the country, which he tried to divert the attention of people from the inefficiencies, corruption, and weaknesses of his government. Moreover, they say Khan is trying to misguide the people by using rhetorics which could be very dangerous for people and the country.

The writer is PhD Scholar at the Department of Defense and Strategic Studies, Quaid-i-Azam University Islamabad, Pakistan.

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