The Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) has announced its intention to lodge a case against the Rangers and the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) for what it calls the “kidnapping” of its Chairman, Imran Khan, from the premises of the Islamabad High Court on May 9. The decision was made during a meeting of the party’s central leadership, headed by Khan himself, on Sunday.
Imran Khan, the former prime minister who was removed from office through a vote of no-confidence in April of the previous year, was arrested by the Rangers in connection with the Al-Qadir Trust case, based on a warrant from the anti-graft watchdog. The PTI strongly condemned what it referred to as the “abduction” of its chief and called for the formation of a high-powered commission by the Supreme Court to investigate the killing of citizens on May 9 and the attempts to create anarchy in the country.
Following Khan’s arrest, violent protests broke out in various parts of the nation. The unrest resulted in the deaths of at least 10 people, with dozens more sustaining injuries. Internet services have remained suspended across the country since then. In response to the loss of unarmed lives during the peaceful protests, the PTI announced its intention to file cases against those responsible. This includes Interior Minister Rana Sanaullah, caretaker chief ministers of Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa – Mohsin Raza Naqvi and Azam Khan, respectively – as well as police officers, including Inspector Generals, among others.
Additionally, the PTI criticized the caretaker government in Punjab, stating that it has no legal or constitutional justification to continue as the Supreme Court’s deadline for holding elections in the province expired on May 14. The party labeled this as a “murder of the Constitution.” The PTI called for an investigation into the alleged pre-planned strategy to create anarchy during their peaceful protests and incidents of firing on citizens.
The party expressed concerns over the “handing over” of Islamabad’s Red Zone to the private militia of an allied party of the government, referring to the Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam-Fazl (JUI-F), a key ally of the ruling Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM), whose chief, Maulana Fazlur Rehman, announced a sit-in outside the Supreme Court on Monday.
In its declaration, the PTI pledged to respond to any efforts by the ruling alliance to blackmail the apex court or impede its constitutional duties with the force of the people. The party emphasized that free, fair, and immediate general elections are the only solution to the country’s national stability, political, and economic crises.