LAHORE, (SANA): Pakistan Tehrik-i-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan said on Sunday that his party would have boycotted the upcoming presidential election, had the party candidate, justice (retd) Wajihuddin Ahmad, not requested for the PTI’s participation in the presidential race. Khan said that he would not participate in an APC if the closed-door session was not held prior to it, adding that the APCs were held earlier but these were not remain resulted oriented.
Khan said he agreed with the stance of the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) but his party was participating in the presidential elections under protest.
Addressing a press conference in Lahore after attending a party meeting, the PTI chief reiterated his stance that a closed-door session between himself, Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and the Army chief should precede a public forum such as the APC to curb militancy and address the overall law and order and security situation in the country. Imran Khan said that he would not particpate in an APC if the closed-door session was not held prior to it.
Moreover the PTI chief also claimed that arrangements for rigging of the local body elections were taking place on the same scale as the rigging that took place during May 11 general elections this year.
He also indicated full-fledged protests would be staged on the roads and streets in order to save democracy.
He demanded recounting with fingerprint verification in four constituencies.
He said he supported the Opposition’s decision to boycott the presidential election, adding he wanted to boycott it but did not want to leave the field open to PML-N.
“Justice (r) Wajihuddin is the best person for the slot of Pakistan’s president because he will remain neutral,” he said. He said date for the presidential election was announced in hurry and sufficient time was not allowed for campaign.
Terming the proposed All Parties Conference as a futile exercise, Imran said that he would not take part in it.
“Earlier APC held for devising a national policy to counter terrorism was of no consequence,” he said.
However, Imran said he would like to have a one-to-one talk with COAS and PM Nawaz Sharif on the terrorism issue.
About drone attacks he said Pervaiz Musharraf had admitted that these attacks were executed with the consent of Pakistan government.
He said he had contacted the British government after Altaf Hussain’s provocative address at Teen Talwar, Karachi. He said democracy can move forward only if the presidency is neutral.
The PTI chief said that the party’s presidential nominee retired justice Wajihuddin is very competent and his integrity is beyond any doubt.
He said “We have serious reservations on the rigging in May 11 elections and we will keep raising our voice against it.” He demanded to recheck the thumb impressions in four constituencies.
Referring to local bodies’ elections, he said PTI will ensure transparent elections in the province without using any state machinery and make it an example.
Meanwhile talking to a private TV channel Federal Minister for Information and Broadcasting Senator Pervez Rasheed said that the government was willing to hold a closed-door session with Imran Khan and the Chief of Army Staff and expressed hopes that that PTI chief would participate in the APC convened by the government.
Meanwhile Punjab Law Minister Rana Sanaullah Khan said that Imran Khan wants to hide his defeat in the elections in form of leveling allegations of rigging in polls. He said Imran Khan has fear that the voters of PTI would leave him alone. He said that Imran Khan instead of leveling allegations rigging he should have to point out the people who have sold the party tickets. He said that the so called tsunami has been buried as the people have rejected PTI in polls.