Qureshi terms PTI long march 'referendum against imported setup'

Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Vice Chairman Shah Mehmood Qureshi said on Friday that "the massive public participation in the long march is a referendum against the imported setup, and in favor of true independence" as the party continued its march towards the capital.

Raising alarm over the country's dwindling economy, the PTI leader claimed that "the country's economy is on the brink of collapse".

اس وقت ملکی معیشت تباہی کے دہانے پر ھے، جب کہ واضح طور پر دیکھا جاسکتا ھے کہ صرف 8 ماہ قبل عمران خان کی قیادت میں تمام اعشاریے مثبت اور ملک ترقی کی راہ پر گامزن تھا ۔ لانگ مارچ میں بھرپور عوامی شرکت امپورٹڈ سیٹ اپ کے خلاف، اور حقیقی آزادی کے حق میں ریفرنڈم ھے۔
— Shah Mahmood Qureshi (@SMQureshiPTI) November 18, 2022

On the other hand, he maintained that "just eight months ago, under the leadership of Imran Khan, all decimals were positive and the country was on the path of progress".

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Meanwhile, PTI secretary general Asad Umar while addressing a public rally in Balkasar said that the country was "truly at a crossroads".

He maintained that Pakistan faced a choice between the "75-year-old path of oppression" and "the path of dignity and freedom".

Secretary General PTI @Asad_Umar addressing the crowd at Balkasar interchange. #الیکشن_کراؤ_ملک_بچاؤ
— PTI (@PTIofficial) November 18, 2022

"Your captain is waging a war for you. The captain's team is sanding with him," he added as he urged supporters to join the party's cause.

Dullah, Chakwal, welcomed Secretary General PTI @Asad_Umar ! #الیکشن_کراؤ_ملک_بچاؤ
— PTI (@PTIofficial) November 18, 2022

Later, Umar spoke at a gathering at Dhalan in Chakwal where he said a "massive conspiracy" was being hatched to "weaken the country" and claimed that the country did not face "kinetic threats alone" but a "real threat to its freedom".

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According to the schedule published by the PTI, Umar's rally is to rest in Chakwal today, while Shah Mehmood Qureshi will reach Gujjar Khan followed by Pervez Khattak who is expected to reach Khyber today while Murad Saeed is expected to be in Buner.

Haqeeqi Azadi March schedule for today:

Chairman @ImranKhanPTI will address at 4.30PM@Asad_Umar – in Chakwal@SMQureshiPTI – in Gujjar Khan@PervezKhattakPK – in Khyber @MuradSaeedPTI – in Buner#الیکشن_کراؤ_ملک_بچاؤ
— PTI (@PTIofficial) November 18, 2022

Sources have also confirmed that Imran Khan will address the rallies live today at 4:30pm.

As to the PTI chief's arrival in Rawalpindi, party ally and Awami Muslim League chief Sheikh Rashid has also hinted that it "could be delayed by two to three days".

آئی ایم ایف مذاکرات موخر ہنگامی کیبنٹ موخراسمبلی کاجوائنٹ سیشن بھی موخرہو گیاہےہونےکیاجا رہا ہےکسی کوخبرنہیں ملک ہیجان قیاس اور افواہوں کی زدمیں ہےعمران خان کی راولپنڈی لانگ مارچ آمد 2. 3 روز آگے جاسکتی ہے30 نومبر تک سارےفیصلےہو جائیں گئےآج 3 بجےلال حویلی میں پریس کانفرنس کروں گا
— Sheikh Rashid Ahmed (@ShkhRasheed) November 18, 2022

"The IMF talks have been postponed, the joint session of the emergency cabinet has also been postponed. No one knows what is going to happen. The country is under the influence of speculation and rumours," he said, adding that "all decisions will be made until November 30".

A day earlier, Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Umar Ata Bandial had dismissed a petition to stop the ‘Haqeeqi Azadi’ march and remarked that it was a political problem that can be solved politically.

On the other hand, earlier today the Islamabad High Court (IHC) directed the PTI to submit a fresh application to the capital’s administration for permission to hold a rally, asking the party to ensure that the fundamental rights of the citizens are not affected.

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