Submit :
News                      Photos                     Just In                     Debate Topic                     Latest News                    Articles                    Local News                    Blog Posts                     Pictures                    Reviews                    Recipes                    
  
Imran Khan: Pakistan's pro-jehadi Prime Minister
The 65-year-old Imran Ahmed Khan Niazi, who is popularly known as Imran Khan, is Pakistan's 22nd Prime Minister.

In his over two decades old political career, Imran Khan is known to have been pro-Islamist. Even after becoming Prime Minister on 18 August 2018, Imran Khan showed mushy attitude towards Islamists and ensured that they are not persecuted any more. 

Within a month of assuming office, Imran Khan directed (September 28, 2018) Pakistan's Intelligence Bureau (IB) chief Dr. Suleman Khan to concentrate on fighting corruption instead of countering terrorism. Accordingly, Dr Khan, who had previously played a vital role in countering terrorism in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province had to shelve counter-terrorism as a subject of the IB. Incidentally, Pakistan IB comes under direct control of the Prime Minister and known to be his ears and eyes.

Although Imran Khan is labeled as Pakistan army "supported and selected" prime minister, in and outside the country, however, the fact is that it was not only Pakistan army which had supported him, had also unequivocal support of Pakistan's some leading hardliners, radicals and banned terrorist groups. Imran Khan's past favorable overtures towards "deep-seated" Pakistani fundamentalists like Taliban had facilitated him winning support of such rouge elements in general elections.

Notably, Imran Khan has been accused of being a supporter of militancy and terrorism by a section of Pakistanis and politicians including Asif Ali Zardari, co-chairperson of Pakistan People's Party (PPP) and former President of Pakistan, who had accused Imran Khan of having links with Taliban. In February 2014 Imran Khan was also nominated by Pakistan Taliban to talk to Islamabad, which however, he had refused later on. Meanwhile, following Imran Khan's known support to Taliban he is also known as "'Taliban Khan".

It is publicly acknowledged that Grand master of terrorism Hafiz Saeed enjoys a special relationship with Imran Khan, who unabashedly described Hafiz Saeed as a " revolutionary" , surrounded by some supporters who "might had indulged in violence". Imran Khan tried to justified his association with Hafiz Saeed, saying that as a politician it was his duty to engage everyone, 'however extreme they be'.

During Nawaz Sharif's regime, Imran Khan had also openly supported (April 9, 2018) Hafiz Saeed in the National Assembly against ban on Jamaat-ud-Dawa (JuD). Meanwhile, Imran Khan's government has provided legitimacy to Hafiz Saeed's radical overtures, when Pakistan's Federal Minister for Religious Affairs and Inter-faith Harmony Noor-Ul-Haq Qadri sat beside Hafiz Saeed while attending (October 1,2018 ,Islamabad) an All Parties Conference organized by the Difa-e-Pakistan Council, which is an umbrella coalition of more than 40 anti-Indian and anti-US Pakistani political and religious parties.

Imran Khan had also been criticized for adopting a soft-stance on militants and Taliban. His party Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) was accused of joining Jamaat-ud-Dawa(JuD) and Jamaat-e-Islami (JI) in calling Osama bin Laden a "martyr of Islam". He, however, dismissed all such allegations by claiming that his ideology had always been to conduct dialogue with militants, not support terrorism. He also advocated talks with Taliban on the plea that if USA could talk with Taliban then why not Pakistan .Meanwhile, Imran Khan has supported right-wing extremists and he had not never made it secret.

Meanwhile, immediately after the general elections to Pakistan's National Assembly (NA) in July 2018, an anti-Shia radical group of Sunnis viz; Ahle Sunnat Wal Jamaa (ASWJ), had claimed that it had supported Imran Khan's party Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) in 70 NA constituencies out of which 45 PTI candidates had won only in Punjab province. In support of this claim, the ASWJ had also released a list of 70 PTI candidates it supported on various National Assembly seats including chairman Imran Khan in both Karachi and Lahore. The ASWJ had further claimed that it had also supported 15 PTI candidates in Sindh as well as in 10 constituencies in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa (KP) and most of its supported PTI candidates won their seats general elections. Incidentally, ASWJ, had also contested the general elections under the banner of Pakistan Rahe Haq Party (PRHP) but could not win any seat.

Imran Khan, even before becoming Prime Minister was known to be having a soft corner for Taliban and Pakistani radical groups and their leaders including Grand Master of Terrorism, Hafiz Saeed and his Jammat-ud-Dawa(JuD). Before assuming office of Prime Minister, Imran Khan  and his senior party leaders were seen hobnobbing with leaders of extreme Sunni terrorist radicals groups like JuD and Sipah-e-Sahaba(SSP). Imran Khan never supported Pakistan military operations against Taliban and terrorists viz operation "Rah-e-Shahadat"(2013) and Operation" Zarb-e-Azb" (2014) and had inter alia declared d that if he came to power he would cease any action against the Taliban and al-Qaeda as " there was not a threat to Pakistan from Taliban ideology."

Significantly, before becoming Prime Minister Imran Khan extended not only political and moral support to Taliban and other Pakistani Sunni radicals but its party led provincial government in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa had also extended huge financial support to the tune of Rs (Pak) 300 million and Rs 200 million in June 2016 and February 2018, respectively to Darul Uloom Haqqania, a Nowshera district based a religious seminary ,which is also known as nursery of terrorism. Later, Imran Khan, in his official capacity as Prime Minister, while addressing (Islamabad, October 4,2018) some Pakistani leading Ulema asserted that it was unfair to link madrassas with terrorism.

Darul Uloom Haqqania is known to be the University of Jihad" is being run by Jamiat Ulema-i-Islam (JUI) Sami chief Maulana Samiul Haq and its students were accused of being involved in the murder of former prime minister Benazir Bhutto. It had also produced world known terrorist Taliban like Mohd Umar and Jallaluddin Haqqani. Imran Khan attempted to justify financial grants to the said seminary by claiming that funds and support would help the seminary students assimilate in Pakistani society, bring them in to the mainstream and keep them away from radicalization.

ISI supported Pakistan and POK based militant groups operating in Kashmir had also extended their support to Imran Khan before and after the July 2018 general elections. Before the general elections were held in, a senior PTI leader Asad Umar had claimed (July 17,2018) that the founder of a leading Kashmiri terrorist group Harkat-ul Mujahideen (HuM) Maulana Fazlur Rehman Khalil had extend support to Imran Khan and joined PTI. Similarly, leaders of radical group Ansar-ul-Umma , their allies and clerics had also pledged their support for Imran Khan and his party in the elections. Meanwhile, after Imran Khan's victory in the elections, Syed Salahuddin had chief of the ISI supported some Kashmiri terrorist groups operating under umbrella of United Jihad Council (UJC)'s had also convened (Muzaffarabad –POK, July 30, 2018) a high level meeting of UJC and congratulated Imran Khan for his victory in the Pakistan's general elections and lauded his statement on Kashmir.

Imran Khan's unabated support to Islamist and ISI sponsored anti-Kashmiri rouge elements is detrimental to the security of entire Indian sub-continent. Being a Pakistan army and ISI ''pawn" it is unlikely that Imran Khan, during his tenure, would shed-off his soft stance towards Islamists and initiate any action to rein in militancy in Kashmir for restoring normal relations with India.

Editorial NOTE: This article is categorized under Opinion Section. The views expressed in this article are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of merinews.com. In case you have a opposing view, please click here to share the same in the comments section.
COMMENTS (5)
Guest
Name
Email Id
Verification Code
Email me on reply to my comment
Email me when other CJs comment on this article
}
Sign in to set your preference
Advertisement
merinews for RTI activists


Advertisement
Not finding what you are looking for? Search here.