I'd thank them if they place my name on ECL: Imran

As the federal government mulls placing Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan's name on the no-fly list, the former prime minister said that he would "thank" the incumbent regime if it places his name on the Exit Control List (ECL), adding that he does not wish to leave the country.

"I don't have any assets in London and I don't wish to leave the country… everything I own is in Pakistan so if the government puts my name on the ECL, I'd thank them," he said during an interview on Express News programme Takrar.

Imran said that on what grounds will the government arrest him as nothing has been proven against him so far.

Read more: Govt mulls legal action for Imran's disqualification

The former PM alleged that the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) was involved in conspiring against him. "The PPP and the PML-N have nurtured many big players from whom they get money and later use that money during the elections."

Saying that his party would stage a protest against the chief election commissioner in front of the ECP office in Islamabad, the ousted premier said that many people told him that Sikandar Sultan Raja was "the PML-N's man", adding that his party would approach the Supreme Judicial Council against him.

The PTI chairman said that money was used to buy members during the Senate elections. "It should be asked from where did they get this money to bribe the members… both these parties (the PPP and the PML-N) have done many wrongdoings under the garb of the 18th amendment."

The army, he said, is an important part of the country's integrity but one cannot hold the entire country over the appointment of the army chief as the economy is also important.

Also read: PTI supporter claims she is Pakistani, funded party through 'honest means'

"Instead of thinking about November, we should think about now because the situation is very bad. Textile factories are closing down and there is a severe energy crisis due to which people are losing their jobs," he added.

The former premier went on to say that the inflation in the country is on the rise and the problems of the people are increasing by each day, therefore, "we must think about the economy first". "Immediate and transparent elections are the only solution to all the problems."

Imran said that he is willing to talk if the government announces the date for the election. However, he added, the PML-N and the PPP only want to eliminate the PTI from the game by any means, saying that both will fail as people supported his party.

He said that there were 183 methods for rigging but if electronic voting machines are installed, 130 of those become redundant automatically. "Shehbaz Sharif and [Asif Ali] Zardari are not announcing the election date as they have fear of losing," he added.

He said that the PTI has 163 seats whereas the PML-Q has 10 seats in Punjab and the cabinet has been formed keeping these numbers in view but added that more members will be added to the cabinet soon and the PML-Q members will be given more portfolios.

Answering a question, the ousted prime minister ruled out any possibility of returning to the National Assembly. "If we sit there it would mean we have become facilitators… If the government dissolves the assembly and gives the date of the elections then we can talk."


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