Imran Khan must be punished for his ‘criminal act’: Rana Sanaullah

ISLAMABAD – Interior Minister Rana Sanaullah Khan told the media on Tuesday that ousted prime minister Imran Khan's long march was aimed at spreading anarchy in the country.–Photo courtesy Radio Pakistan

ISLAMABAD — Pakistan’s Interior Minister Rana Sanaullah Khan said on Tuesday that ousted prime minister Imran Khan’s long march was aimed at crippling the federal capital and spreading anarchy in the country.

Addressing a press conference in Islamabad on Tuesday afternoon, Rana Sanaullah said Imran Khan himself admitted that his supporters participating in Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf’s (PTI) long march were carrying weapons.

Imran Khan said in a recent TV interview that his supporters participating in the long march were carrying weapons and that he called off his party’s anti-government protest due to fears of violence.

Imran Khan had given a call for a long march later this month, urging his supporters to reach Islamabad on May 25 and dislodge what he calls “the imported government” of 11 coalition partners led by Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif.

Rana Sanaullah said that Imran Khan’s long march was a “criminal act” and not a political activity. Since it was a “criminal act”, he said, it was punishable under the Pakistan Penal Code (PPC).

The interior minister said he floated a proposal at a meeting of the federal cabinet that a case should be registered against the PTI leadership over this “criminal act”. He said the entire PTI leadership, including PTI Chairman Imran Khan, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Chief Minister Mahmood Khan and members of the PTI’s core committee, should be interrogated and executed for marching on Islamabad. He said the federal cabinet had formed a committee to discuss his proposal.

Rana Sanaullah said the government was 200 percent sure the PTI had marched on the federal capital with the plans to force their entry into Islamabad’s Red Zone, take over the key buildings that were symbols of the state and cause bloodshed for political gains.

The interior minister said the government would not bring up any evidence against the PTI from its own sources; it would only use audios, videos and phone conversations of PTI leaders to prove that the long march was an attempt to spread anarchy in the country.

Interior Minister Rana Sanaullah is considered one of the cabinet members Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif trusts the most and that is the reason he has been given a key ministry.

Imran Khan issues first statement after ouster from power

The Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) and its supporters consider Rana Sanaullah an effective weapon against political opponents due to his handling of the Model Town incident where the Punjab Police had shot to death 14 activists of the Pakistan Awami Tehreek (PAT) and wounded around 100 others.

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