Home Latest News Aleem Khan Alleges Massive Corruption in PTI-Led Punjab

Aleem Khan Alleges Massive Corruption in PTI-Led Punjab

by Staff Report

File photo

In wide-ranging press conference, dissident MPA slams appointed prime minister for accusing lawmakers of sedition

Aleem Khan, a former stalwart of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) with close ties to appointed Prime Minister Imran Khan, on Monday alleged that outgoing Punjab Chief Minister Usman Buzdar had been taking bribes in exchange for approving transfers and postings in the country’s most populous province.

“Have you no shame?” he said during a press conference in Lahore while directly addressing the appointed premier. “You sent your close aides to jail,” he said, referring to himself and Jahangir Khan Tareen, whose forward bloc has pledged to support the opposition in the election for next chief minister of Punjab. “We informed you about every corrupt practice [Usman] Buzdar was involved in,” he continued. “But [it seems] the ones standing with you are patriots, others are traitors,” he added.

In the same vein, Aleem questioned Khan over accusations that politicians who had met U.S. officials were part of a “foreign conspiracy” to oust him from power. “Was it treacherous when I met the E.U. ambassador and the U.S. envoy at Banigala [Khan’s Islamabad mansion] with you while in opposition?” he said, adding that it was “unfortunate” that the PTI had resorted to branding him and other dissident members “traitors” over activities the party had itself indulged in during its time in the opposition.

“I have become a traitor. Tell [PMLQ’s Tariq Basheer] Cheema and Salik [Hussain of the PMLQ] they are also traitors, they have taken the money,” he said of the two MNAs of the PTI’s allied Pakistan Muslim League (Quaid) who had joined the opposition prior to the vote of no-confidence in the National Assembly.

Aleem clarified that he had no love lost for the Pakistan Muslim League (Nawaz), as he had faced a difficult time as a businessmen during their rule of Punjab from 2010 to 2018. However, he added, he now regretted the decade of his life he had dedicated to the PTI, stressing “there was no one who was more devoted and supportive of the PTI than me.”

Accusing the appointed prime minister of being “not sincere with the nation,” he alleged that Khan had repeatedly taken decisions that were damaging to the party and the country, including “hounding” his allies with National Accountability Bureau cases; retaining Buzdar as chief minister despite repeated reports of his alleged corruption; and finally the nomination of PMLQ leader Pervaiz Elahi for the slot of Punjab chief minister.

“Were there no suitable candidates among the 183 PTI MPAs from Punjab?” he asked, adding that the PTI chairman had nominated the person who he used to call the “biggest dacoit” in Punjab.

Aleem, who was formerly a minister in the Punjab cabinet, also accused Farah Jamil—a close aide of Khan’s wife Bushra Bibi—of having taken a “lot of bribes.” Claiming she and her husband had absconded abroad, he claimed that she had been involved in transfers and postings of bureaucrats in Punjab. “All will come to light when 3-4 bureaucrats are arrested,” he warned, adding this would also clarify where Farah was transferring all the money she received. “I do not want to mention anything else about Imran Khan’s family,” he said.

Pakistan is currently in the midst of a constitutional crisis, provoked by the deputy speaker dismissing the opposition’s no-confidence resolution without any vote after claiming their actions were in violation of Article 5 (loyalty to the state) of the Constitution. Immediately after the dismissal, Khan advised President Arif Alvi to dissolve the National Assembly and announced early elections. The Supreme Court is currently hearing arguments on a suo motu notice over whether the deputy speaker’s actions were a violation of the Constitution.

Reacting to Aleem’s press conference, PTI spokesman Shahbaz Gill said he was saddened by the former minister’s allegations. “I will respond to Aleem on behalf of the prime minister: You joined PTI without any ulterior motive. Aleem Khan should have expressed such reservations when he was part of the PTI,” he said in a statement. “Aleem Khan’s business interests clashed with PTI’s manifesto several times,” he added.

Related Articles

Leave a Comment