Pakistan

ISLAMABAD – In an apparent reaction to statements made by former information minister Pervaiz Rasheed, senior PML-N leader Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan said that some people have put the entire blame for their mistakes on the interior ministry and establishment.

“Decisions have been taken against us while ‘the interior’ [minister] existed, JITs have been created and ‘whatsapps’ have also happened while ‘the interior’ was there,” Pervaiz Rasheed said, in an apparent controversial statement likely aimed at former interior minister Chaudhry Nisar.

The statement by Pervaiz Rasheed prompted the former interior minister to issue a strong-worded response.

“Don’t know why some people put the blame of their faults on the interior ministry. It seems that they are obsessed with the interior ministry and the former interior minister,” Chaudhary Nisar was quoted as saying by his spokesperson.

In a statement issued through his spokesperson, Nisar said that Rasheed should have elaborated that what type of help he was expecting from the interior ministry.

“People should tell what help they expected from the interior ministry and should have the moral courage to explain the conspiracies staged against them,” said a statement released by Nisar’s spokesman. “They should also have the moral courage to not confuse the nation,” added the statement.

In a reference to the Dawn Leaks commission, the former interior minister said that “a five-member committee comprising of members from federal and provincial institutions gave a decision against them.”

Earlier, former federal minister of Information, Broadcasting, and National Heritage, Pervaiz Rasheed said that it was the establishment mentality that had done everything and that PTI was just a pawn. A “ghost” which haunts Pakistan has led to the ouster of Nawaz Sharif, he said in an interview to Samaa TV, aired on Friday.

Rasheed, who was removed after an inquiry into the Dawn story case, said this while responding to a question on whether Sharif’s ouster was the outcome of a conspiracy.

“It [ghost] is present in politicians, political minds, and some institutions,” he said, refusing to name any institution but naming the ghost after the former president and military ruler Pervez Musharraf.

“Decisions were taken against us despite the presence of the Interior Ministry,” he said. “A lot happened despite the existence of our government,” he added.

Rasheed said he was targeting “a particular mindset which needs to change for Pakistan to prosper.” He also accused Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) of being “a mere pawn to the said mindset, without dwelling on what it entails”.

“Whenever the prime ministers were sent home before this [Nawaz’s recent disqualification], people wouldn’t even remember their names in the next few months,” Rasheed said, adding that, however, there was an immediate public response when Nawaz was deposed.