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Imran Khan says unseat me and see what I do. Pakistanis decoding PM’s message

Some Pakistanis said Imran Khan’s message was also directed at the army.

File photo of PM Imran Khan | Facebook/ImranKhanOfficial
File photo of PM Imran Khan | Facebook/ImranKhanOfficial

New Delhi: It is now widely known what keeps Pakistan PM Imran Khan awake at night. Inflation, he said in his public interaction programme Aap Ka Wazir-e-Azam, Aap Kay Saath. He had earlier assured Pakistanis not to be afraid: “aapne ghabrana nahin hai”. Except that doesn’t seem to apply to the country’s opposition. In the video that has gone viral and is drawing sharp reactions from the general public and the opposition, Khan warned them if they unseat him, he can turn dangerous.

Pakistan is reeling under severe inflation pressure that has been amplified by the pandemic. The prime minister said that when the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf-led government came to power, they had to deal with massive deficits which increased the price of imports. He added that many countries are facing supply shortages.

Maryam Nawaz Sharif, vice-president of Pakistan Muslim League (Nawaz), said that Imran Khan had accepted his defeat.

There were also those who interpreted the prime minister’s remark as one directed towards the Pakistan army. “A section of media is saying that Imran Khan is also hinting at the army of the consequences if he was sacked,” said senior journalist Imran Khan in his video blog on YouTube.

 

In a TV debate on ARY News, a panelist pointed at the “body language” of the prime minister. The channel was debating PM Khan’s aggressive messaging where the panelist concluded that the Khan was sending the message to a bigger block—to his party (not to believe rumours surrounding his exit) and to the voters who might be influenced by the opposition.

After the PM’s live, #byebyeImranKhan is trending on social media with some users even posting memes.

A user posted an old news clip, pointing at what Pakistanis think of their prime minister. In the video, a man can be seen saying that his favourite actor is Imran Khan.

Another user said that the PM’s words reminded him of his childhood and how he used to walk away if declared out in a cricket match.

 

Pakistani journalist Naila Inyat also commented on the prime minister’s live with a Bollywood song to describe PM Khan’s position.

 

Another user said the prime minister looks defeated and that he should only blame himself.

 

Data released by the Pakistan Bureau of Statistics on Saturday revealed that prices of consumer goods continue to rise in the country. December inflation rose to 12.3 per cent from 11.5 per cent, a 21-month high.

The prime minister reiterated that the Pakistan economy would grow above four per cent despite many challenges. Yet again, PM Khan cited the economic indicators of some of the western countries to justify the situation in Pakistan and praised his policy of not going for a lockdown during the first wave of the pandemic in 2020 which, according to him, saved the country from disaster.

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