Imran’s PTI vs. Military – Round 365

Today, both PTI and the military establishment mark May 9 as a ‘black day’ by labeling each other as the victim and an aggressor….reports Hamza Ameer

Thursday (May 9) marks one year to the time when supporters of former Prime Minister Imran Khan and his party Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) expressed their anger against the country’s powerful military establishment by engaging in violence, riots, attacks on military installations and a ‘call for resistance’ — a narrative that Khan successfully injected in his supporters since his ouster from power in April 2022.

Today, both PTI and the military establishment mark May 9 as a ‘black day’ by labeling each other as the victim and an aggressor.

The current ruling federal government — along with its coalition political partners who control the provincial set-ups in Sindh, Balochistan and Punjab — condemn PTI and Imran Khan for brainwashing supporters who carried out targeted violent attacks on sensitive military installations across the country, last year.

The military establishment also remains vocal on the issue.

“The Armed Forces of Pakistan, along with Chairman Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee (CJCSC) and Services Chiefs, strongly condemn the criminal acts perpetrated on May 9, 2023. On this one of the darkest days in our national history, politically motivated and brainwashed miscreants in an act of rebellion, deliberately resorted to violence against state institutions and vandalised sacred symbols of the state and the sites belonging to national heritage,” read a statement issued by the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR).

The military establishment maintains that it showed “utmost restraint” during the orchestrated violence, highlighting that the malicious attempt to trigger confrontation between the protesters and the armed forces was thwarted.

The ISPR has made it clear that the culprits behind the riots and attacks will not be spared.

Islamabad, May 09 (ANI): Former Pakistan PM and Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) chief Imran Khan being arrested by Pakistani rangers from outside the Islamabad High Court in Pakistan on Tuesday. (ANI Photo)

“It is precisely for this reason there can neither be any compromise with the planners, facilitators and executors of May 9 tragedy nor they would be allowed to hoodwink the law of the land. Bringing the real culprits to justice is paramount to ensure that in the future, no one dares to desecrate memories of our heroes and the symbols of our unity through such an unwarranted conduct in the future,” an ISPR statement stated.

The PTI and the military establishment’s rigid stance against each other is quite visible even after one year as both sides are not willing to concede ground.

“The PTI needs to acknowledge that it acted in an extremely irresponsible manner by leading its supporters towards such an unacceptable reaction. Thousands were targeted in reprisals by the state, and the events of the day accelerated the expansion of unelected forces and their influence in the state’s legislative and administrative apparatus,” said senior political analyst Javed Siddique.

“On the other hand, the state too, is not innocent. Rather than acting with restraint, it responded with extreme measures that reminded us of the past dictatorships,” he added.

ALSO READ: No Apologies: Imran Khan Sticks to His Stance on May 9 Protests


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