Pakistan Approves More Cases Against Imran Khan for Alleged Hate Speech Against State Institutions
Pakistan Approves More Cases Against Imran Khan for Alleged Hate Speech Against State Institutions

The Punjab government of Pakistan has given the green light to register additional cases against imprisoned former Prime Minister Imran Khan and his party members. This decision comes in response to accusations of inciting hatred against state institutions, particularly the powerful Pakistan Army. Imran Khan, a 71-year-old former cricketer-turned-politician, has been in jail since August last year, following convictions in some of the nearly 200 cases filed against him after his ousting in April 2022.

"After a recent cabinet meeting on Friday evening, the Punjab Cabinet under Maryam Nawaz has approved legal action against Imran Khan and other leaders of his Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) party for promoting a hate narrative against state institutions," announced Punjab Information Minister Azma Bokhari during a press conference.

Bokhari also likened Imran Khan's rhetoric to that of Mujeebur Rehman, who led the independence movement in Bangladesh against Pakistan and became its first Prime Minister in 1971. She alleged that those who visit Khan in Adiala Jail Rawalpindi are further spreading hate against the institutions.

Furthermore, the Punjab government is considering pressing charges against Khan and his associates for writing an article in a British newspaper, based on a complaint from a journalist, Bokhari added.

In a recent article published in The Telegraph, Imran Khan accused the military establishment, under the direction of Chief of Army Staff Gen Asim Munir, of attempting to eradicate his party's influence from Pakistan's political landscape, despite the failure of these efforts in the 2024 general elections.

"The military's oppression, torture, and denial of our election symbol have been extensively documented, but none of their tactics succeeded in preventing PTI-supported candidates from winning a majority," Khan wrote.

He further condemned the military's alleged interference in electoral processes and accused the civilian leadership of acting as its puppets. Khan warned of consequences, stating, "If anything happens to me or my wife, Gen Asim Munir will be held responsible. But I am not afraid because my faith is strong. I would prefer death over slavery."

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