“If Imran Khan or Sheikh Rasheed had said this, we would have considered it political rivalry, but we were likened to the Sicilian mafia, which is a criminal organisation,” Rafique complained in an address to a gathering of the party workers.
The minister said that the party will always rebut these accusations.
He then implored the Joint Investigation Team, probing the Sharif family’s financial dealings abroad, to question itself whether it is trying to unearth the truth or just wandering aimlessly.
The JIT, formed on May 6 in light of the Supreme Court’s April 20 judgment in the Panama case, was given 60 days to complete its probe.
However, since the original deadline was falling on a Friday, and with the JIT taking a day off on Eid, July 10 has been decided as the deadline to submit its final report.
Addressing his political opponents, Rafique said that Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf chief Imran Khan might not want to indulge in politics of abuse and accusations but his close aides are advising him to do so.
Imran should learn the lessons that the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) and Pakistan Peoples Party learnt after decades of rivalry, he added.
The minister said that his party would not stoop to the level of the PTI leaders and its young workers who do not realise the decades of hard work and sacrifices political leaders gave for democracy.
Mentioning examples from the past, Rafique said elected leaders have always been removed by “unconventional means”. “Why is that whenever PML-N is in power due to popular vote, there are attempts to remove it through unconventional means?”
“People might disagree with disagree with our politics but even our opponents can’t deny we fought against civil and military dictatorships,” Rafique added.
Shah Mehmood Qureshi says no crisis if PM dismissed
PTI leader Shah Mehmood Qureshi, in response to Rafique’s press conference, said the PML-N is worried as the date of the final JIT report is near.
Rubbishing concerns that there will be a national crisis if the prime minister is dismissed, Qureshi said that a new prime minister can be chosen or fresh elections can be called after dissolving the assemblies.
He claimed that it is not him or his party but the masses who want to get rid of corrupt rulers.
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The 68th Anniversary of the Founding of the People’s Republic of China.
— The Daily Mail - People's Daily