No option but to ban PTI: Sanaullah

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By Webdesk

Home Minister Rana Sanaullah addresses a press conference in Islamabad, May 13, 2023, in this still image from a video.  —YouTube/PTVNewsLive
Home Minister Rana Sanaullah addresses a press conference in Islamabad, May 13, 2023, in this still image from a video. —YouTube/PTVNewsLive
  • Sanaullah says Imran Khan’s sole purpose is to spread chaos and anarchy.
  • “PDM will be forced to take extreme measures if PTI’s attitude does not change.”
  • The government will hold these “gangs” accountable, the interior minister promises.

Home Minister Rana Sanaullah said on Saturday there is no option but to impose a ban on Pakistan’s Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) following three days of violent protests that erupted after the arrest of party chief Imran Khan in the Al- Qadir Trust case.

His statement came a day after the PTI chief was granted a blanket exoneration from the Islamabad High Court (IHC) as authorities were barred from arresting him until at least May 15 (Monday).

“It is important to take a stand against armed groups. There is no other option than to ban this party [PTI]the interior minister said at a press conference in Islamabad.

He said the Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM)-led coalition government would be forced to take extreme measures to outlaw the opposition party “if it does not change its attitude”.

Sanaullah said the sole purpose of the PTI chief is spread chaos and anarchy in the country.

He also held the workers and supporters of the Khan-led party responsible for damaging public property and storming military installations across the country during the violent protests across the country.

“The government will hold these ‘gangs’ accountable. She [miscreants] will be identified by cameras with CCTV footage and rounded up one by one,” he added.

He also took a joke at the court for providing relief to the PTI chief, who said the situation would have been brought under control had Khan not been given relief.

The Interior Minister’s press came hours after Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif directed the Punjab government to act quickly and arrest the vandals within 72 hours when he visited the Corps Commander House in Lahore which was looted by the PTI protesters.

“I have given the law enforcement agency a target of 72 hours to arrest anyone involved in facilitating, inciting and perpetrating the outrageous incidents of arson, looting, sabotage and damage to public and private property,” the prime minister said after the chairing a meeting in the Punjab. Headquarters of the safe city authority in Lahore.

At least 10 people were killed and dozens more injured during the two-day protests, which also saw internet services across the country suspended for more than 72 hours.

After the supporters attacked army installations, the army said May 9, 2023 – the day chaos gripped the country following Khan’s arrest – would go down in history as a “dark chapter”.

The military called the PTI leaders “hypocrites” for inciting their workers against the armed forces on the one hand and praising the military on the other – trying to overshadow their criticism.

Khan has criticized the army in the past and after his arrest, his supporters increased the stakes by attacking military targets – burning down the corps commander’s residence in Lahore and the entrance to the army headquarters in Rawalpindi on to fall.

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