- Sanaullah says Swati “maligned” army, judiciary, not govt.
- Expresses hope “institution” will stand by its commitment to stay “apolitical”.
- Petition filed for acquittal of Rana Sanaullah in drug case against him.
Interior Minister Rana Sanauallah Saturday rubbished the claims that the cases against Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf Senator Azam Swati were a part of “political revenge”, saying that Swati did not target the government but two institutions.
The Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) leader said this while addressing a press conference in Lahore. The minister said the government has got nothing to do with the cases against Swati.
Sanaullah said that the senator maligned the army and judiciary and not the government.
“If we wanted to frame [PTI leaders] in court cases or treat them the way they treated us, we would have had them charged with the possession of heroin,” he said.
The interior minister added that the cases are being filed against them in accordance with the law. “Recently, the Balochistan High Court quashed cases against him. On the other hand, we have fought our cases for years,” he said.
Moving on to the alleged audio leak of former finance minister Shaukat Tarin, Sanaullah said that the former finance czar “talked about sabotaging” the International Monetary Fund (IMF) programme.
“They don’t have the power so they are bent on destroying the country’s economy,” he said.
“Why shouldn’t the cases against the members of the coalition government be closed since they are being closed after litigation?” he asked.
Referring to the defamation case against the UK paper related to corruption allegations against Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif, Sanaullah said that the newspaper Daily Mail accepted its mistake and apologised for it.
He claimed that the newspaper made that mistake at former federal minister Shahzad Akbar’s behest.
“Imran Khan leveled false allegations against others while he himself was involved in corruption,” the minister alleged, adding that they should also apologise to the nation for false cases.
Talking about the talks between the incumbent government and the Opposition, Sanaullah said that the government is ready for “unconditional talks“. He added that President Dr Arif Alvi is trying to play a part between the two parties.
“This was also done before by Parvez Khattak, Asad Qaiser, Fawad Chaudhry, and Shah Mahmood Qureshi, however, Imran Khan did not listen to them,” said the minister.
When asked about PML-N supremo Nawaz Sharif’s return, the interior minister said that the party has requested him to be present in Pakistan for the next election campaign, and the former prime minister has accepted it.
Sanaullah expressed hope that the “institution” will stand by its commitment to stay “apolitical”.
“Army is an organised institution where an individual’s policy doesn’t work,” the federal minister said during the media talk in Lahore.
He said that it was the institution’s decision that the army would stay “apolitical”.
“It was the institution’s policy and it still is,” he added.
A petition has been filed seeking the acquittal of Sanaullah in a drug case filed against him during the tenure of the PTI government.
Advocate Farhad Shah, during the hearing, said that Assistant Director Imtiaz Ahmed and Inspector Ahsan Azam are denying the allegations against his client.
The petition stated the case was a part of a political witch-hunt, hence, the PML-N leader should be acquitted.