Former prime minister and PTI Chairman Imran Khan has asked his supporters and party leaders to converge on Rawalpindi on November 26 to demand free and fair elections in the country.
“I am inviting the entire nation to reach Rawalpindi on November 26 (next Saturday). I will meet you there and announce future course of action. This movement is not going to stop even after this march,” he said while addressing supporters via video link in Rawat on Saturday.
“We can never achieve real freedom while sitting at home and living like sheep,” he said as he urged supporters to come out of their homes to force the government to call snap polls.
Imran also addressed the powerful quarters, saying, “Ask anyone you want be it business community, farmers, IT sector or anyone else… everyone believes that free and fair elections is the only way forward to steer the country out of this quagmire”.
The former premier said incumbent government did not have any plan or road map to lift the country out of crises.
“The entire nation will come there [Rawalpindi] and we will demand free and fair elections… this movement will not stop until we achieve real freedom.”
‘Establishment imposed thieves on country’
Imran criticised establishment, saying that he was surprised by the establishment’s decision to impose “corrupt” Sharif and Zardari families on the country.
“Establishment has the power and can take country towards any direction — positive or negative.
“What Pakistan has achieved by regime change in the last seven months,” he asked he establishment. “Why did you impose them on the country… Don’t you know their past? Our agencies have files of their corruption.”
The former premier said “foreign conspiracy” against his government could have never succeeded without the help of ‘local abettors’.
‘No one can remain neutral’
The former premier said no one can remain “neutral” at this time, saying that what is happening today in the country is tantamount to slavery.
“There is a difference between sheep and humans. Humans have rights but society without rule of law turns into a society of animals.”
Giving examples of PTI Senator Azam Swati and Arshad Sharif murder case, Imran said no one would get justice until the nation made efforts for rule of law in the country.
“If I as a former prime minister of the country cannot lodge FIR so how could a common man get justice in this society,” he added.
“No one will come for the rescue of underprivileged in societies where there is no rule of law… if they can kill Arshad Sharif who was number one investigative journalist of Pakistan then no one is safe here,” he added.
Also read: Imran’s long march aimed at making COAS appointment controversial: Bilawal
Imran said the Punjab police refused to lodge FIR of assassination attempt on him due to the fear of ‘Dirty Harry’.
“All developing countries are facing the same problems as Pakistan because people like Nawaz, Zardari and ‘Dirty Harry’ are sitting there who are above the law.”
He accused the coalition government led by PML-N of “destroying” the country’s economy, saying “their only aim is to take relief in corruption cases”.
“Thieves have closed down corruption cases worth Rs11,000 billion by amending NAB laws… It’s been seven months since my ouster but on one can tell a single good thing that they have done for the country.”
Earlier, senior party leader and former foreign minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi, addressing participants at Rawat, said the party had shown utmost restraint after its chief "was riddled with bullets" and its supporters were injured and killed in the assassination bid in Wazirabad.
چئیرمین PTI عمران خان صاحب آج 4:30 بجے اپنے خطاب میں راولپنڈی پہنچنے کی تاریخ کا اعلان کریں گے
لائیو لنک: https://t.co/9qC9x52zrx#نکلو_حقیقی_آزادی_کیلئے
— PTI (@PTIofficial) November 19, 2022
Earlier in the day, PTI's Fawad Chaudhry said that the "final stage" of the party’s ‘Haqeeqi Azadi’ march has arrived, urging people to “get ready” for the PTI chief Imran Khan’s call.
The former information minister announced the long march’s plan and added that today the cavalcades under the leadership of Vice President PTI Shah Mehmood Qureshi and senior leader Asad Umar will meet in the province’s Rawat area.
He furthered that the former prime minister will give a call later today to the people to reach Rawalpindi.
#حقیقی_آزادی_مارچ کا دوسرا مرحلہ روات کے مقام سے راولپنڈی شہر داخل ہو نے کیلئے پہنچے گا شاہ محمود قریشی اور اسد عمر نے اس شاندار مہم کی نگرانی کی آج دونوں قافلے روات کے مقام پر ملیں گے، آخری مرحلہ آ گیا ہے تیار رہیں،عمران خان آج عوام کو راولپنڈی پہنچنے کی کال دیں گے
— Ch Fawad Hussain (@fawadchaudhry) November 19, 2022
PTI’s official Twitter handle announced that the second phase of the march will end today at Rawat.
حقیقی آزادی مارچ کا دوسرا مرحلہ آج روات کےمقام پر ختم ہوگا اور چیئرمین عمران خان صاحب آج 4 بجے تیسرےمرحلے کی تاریخ دیں گے۔ #نکلو_حقیقی_آزادی_کیلئے pic.twitter.com/5WJ5NBibsA
— PTI (@PTIofficial) November 19, 2022
Spokesperson of chief minister Punjab Musarrat Cheema also shared the party’s plan and said the two marches under the supervision of Qureshi and Umar will gather in Rawat.
آج انشاءاللہ شاہ محمود قریشی صاحب اور اسد عمر صاحب کی قیادت میں پہنچنے والے مارچز کا اجتماع روات میں ہوگا.
آج ایک تاریخی اجتماع ہوگا جس سے پاکستانی قوم کے متفقہ لیڈر عمران خان 4:15 اہم خطاب کریں گے اور آگے کے لائحہ عمل کا اعلان کریں گے.
— Musarrat Cheema (@MusarratCheema) November 19, 2022
PTI to protest 'peacfeully'
PTI Senator Faisal Javed also tweeted and said that the party will protest peacefully at the court's designated place in Islamabad.
آج عمران خان بذریعہ ویڈیو لنک "روات" میں #حقیقی_آذادی_لانگ_مارچ
کے راولپنڈی داخلے کی تاریخ کا اعلان کرینگے –
وہ خود راولپنڈی سے اسلام آباد کیجانب کارواں کو لیڈ کرینگے! انشاء اللہ!
ہم اسلام آباد میں عدالت کی مختص جگہ پر پرامن احتجاج کرینگے-پرامن احتجاج عوام کا حق ہے
— Faisal Javed Khan (@FaisalJavedKhan) November 19, 2022
Islamabad admin gives permission for rally
The Islamabad Capital Territory's (ICT) administration on Saturday granted permission to a Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) to conduct its rally from Koral to Rawat areas.
The 35-point no-objection certificate (NOC) issued by the capital’s administration was signed by the district magistrate of Islamabad and PTI Islamabad President Ali Nawaz Awan.
The rally is set to join the larger PTI Haqeeqi Azadi procession, with party chief Imran Khan soon to announce the plan to march to Rawalpindi.
While talking to the participants of the long march a day earlier, the PTI chief commented on his health in connection with the gunshot wounds he had suffered during his “Haqeeqi Azadi March” in Punjab’s Wazirabad on November 3, said that doctors would examine him on Saturday (today).
He also said that he will “personally lead the long march from Rawalpindi”.