Baffled by the unprecedented and unexpected public support that Imran Khan has gained after his ouster from the office of Prime Minister, the coalition government led by Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) has been compelled to stretch their rule for a longer period and to evolve some strategy to taint the public image of Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf chief.
Sources aware of developments taking place on the political landscape of the country informed Bol News that the nine parties’ alliance, which had successfully de-seated Imran Khan through no-confidence motion, was now worried about the overwhelming public response PTI chief was getting across the country, especially the coming out of people in big number in almost all the major cities of the country on his call couple of days after his ouster from office, have perturbed many now part of the fragile ruling coalition.
Sources in PML-N informed that earlier it was the consensus among majority of the parties in Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM) that after doing necessary electoral reforms the coalition government would announce elections. But now after seeing the extraordinary public response to ousted prime minister Imran Khan these parties were giving second thought to their earlier plan and it was decided that now they would stretch their stay in power for longer period and expose the wrongdoings of Imran Khan led government to distort his public image with the aim to dwindle his soaring popular support.
Sources aware of the meetings held in this connection informed Bol News that under a well worked out plan the government has already started targeting Imran Khan and his close aides in government.
The highlighting of Imran Khan securing Tosha Khana gifts and spending of hefty amount of Rs 98 crore on the flight operations of official chopper shuttling between Prime Minister’s House and Imran Khan’s residence in Bani Gala on media by newly appointed Information Minister Marryum Orangzeb was part of this strategy.
Similarly tossing in media of Ms Farrah Khan’s alleged corruption scandal and holding of press conference leveling veiled allegations of corruption on Imran Khan by his erstwhile comrade Aleem Khan is part of ruling alliance campaign to demean Imran Khan, right now touching the zenith of popularity.
The hovering around of Reham Khan, ex-wife of Imran Khan, in echelons of power also seemed part of the strategy and in coming days she might be used to taint his public image.
A senior PTI leader and close aide of Imran Khan said that they were not expecting the way people responded to their call and now nothing can stop Imran Khan to return in power with thumping majority.
In background chat some senior Pakistan Muslim League (Nawaz) Parliamentarians admitted that the massive public support to Imran Khan after his ouster from office was matter of serious concern but hoped that it would thin out with the passage of time.
A PML-N leader, who is also part of the newly formed federal cabinet, said that a large number of senior party leaders were against tabling of no-trust move and wanted to see his government complete mandated five-year term. “Had he been allowed to complete his mandated term in office he would have been voted out of power for his poor performance,” he explained.
Anticipating the government strategy to stretch their stay in power and character-assassination campaign of Imran Khan and some other senior party leaders, Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf had already launched counter-offensive and Imran Khan had himself said in interviews with media that now they (government) would launch vilification campaign against him but expressed his optimism that people would not listen to their negative propaganda.
In his April 21 address in Lahore, Imran Khan had given brief explanation of Tosha Khana gifts and also referred to the lowest spending as Prime Minister as compared to his predecessors.
The coming days and weeks would surely see startling disclosures about Imran Khan by the ruling elite, which might involve some financial and administrative irregularities. How Imran Khan and his team would counter it and not let all this disenchant his supporters—only time will tell.