Pakistan Muslim League Nawaz (PMLN) Senior Vice President Maryam Nawaz on Friday lashed out at Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan, telling him the “game is over” following the May 9 riots and their aftermath, which has seen a mass exodus of leaders and workers from the party. “No one will seek a PTI ticket next elections,” she added
Addressing a youth convention in Vehari, she questioned how people could be expected to remain loyal to the PTI when its leader was evading arrest and not supporting his followers. “Your people are revealing that Imran Khan is the mastermind of May 9,” she alleged, referring to statements from PTI workers and leaders, some of which have been shared with media.
Lamenting that PTI workers were facing anti-terrorism courts while the “mastermind” of the May 9 “terrorism” was still free, she regretted that Khan had taken his wife, Bushra Bibi, to court under great security even as he used other women as shields. Calling on the public to not damage their children’s future by following the “fitna” (mischief)—a frequently used term for Imran Khan by members of the ruling alliance—she claimed it was a positive development that his reality was now visible to all.
“My heart cries tears of blood over the events that happened on May 9,” she said. “I dedicate this meeting to martyrs and their parents, children and widows,” she said, while reiterating that the riots had been “pre-planned” by the PTI at Zaman Park, Khan’s Lahore residence. “Why didn’t the groups of people attack the shopping center in front of the Corps Commanders’ house?” she questioned, alleging that Khan had “instructed” the demonstrators about locations to attack.
Describing the May 9 riots as an “attack on the Pakistan Army,” she claimed Khan had been supported in this by his “facilitators”—a euphemism for the alleged support for the PTI chief within some elements of the establishment. Referring to Khan’s ouster of then-ISI chief Gen. Asim Munir from his post after just eight months, she claimed this had been part of a “conspiracy” that had continued with efforts to prevent him from being appointed Army chief last year. “He [Khan] thought he will turn the tide [in his favor] by dissolving the assemblies. He thought he will turn the tide by attacking the Army,” she said, adding that all these efforts had failed.
Maintaining that no politician feared jail, she claimed that despite the “great cruelties” perpetrated by Khan when he was prime minister, the PMLN “does not believe in political victimization.”