Imran Khan backtracks over extension of army chief's term till elections

Published on Sep 14, 2022 11:54 AM IST

Imran Khan: Imran Khan said he had only proposed deferring the army chief's appointment until new elections.

Imran Khan: Pakistan's former Prime Minister Imran Khan leaves after appearing before the High Court in Islamabad.(AFP)
Imran Khan: Pakistan's former Prime Minister Imran Khan leaves after appearing before the High Court in Islamabad.(AFP)
ANI |

Former Pakistan Prime Minister and Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) chief Imran Khan on Tuesday rejected suggesting the extension of the tenure of Chief of the Army Staff (COAS) General Qamar Javed Bajwa till the next elections.

The PTI chief said he had only proposed deferring the army chief's appointment until new elections. He said that the newly elected government should decide the army chief's selection on merit, reported Geo News.

A day earlier, the former prime minister, while speaking during an interview with a private TV channel, had suggested that the appointment of an army chief should be deferred until the government is elected, which should then choose the new military head.

In a meeting with journalists, Khan said, "I never talked about the extension of the army chief's tenure, I just proposed to defer the appointment of the army chief till the new elections," reported Geo News.

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During the meeting, the former prime minister said that the newly elected government should decide the army chief's selection on merit, adding that he never said who should be the military's head.

"I did not say anything to elicit a statement from Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR)," Khan said, adding that the two families (Sharif and Zardari families) should never select the head of the armed forces."

Meanwhile, Khan decided to call on the nation to protest against the government in September, reported Geo News.

He has been making headlines since his ouster in April because of his constant remarks regarding the army chief.

Earlier this month, while speaking during a public rally in Faisalabad, the PTI chairman had called out the government, saying that it was delaying the elections to appoint an army chief of its own and that if a "patriotic chief of army staff comes in, he will not spare the incumbent rulers."

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Lamenting the impact of floods in Pakistan, the former prime minister said that the 2010 floods and the current ones had caused immense devastation, particularly in Sindh.

He said that the economic fallout of the floods will be witnessed during the winter season. "Tell me (...) do they have a solution? Exports are falling, loans are rising, remittances are falling (...) your capacity to give loans is shrinking."

"The economy is shrinking while unemployment is rising," Khan maintained, adding that such record high inflation -- which clocked in at 27.3 per cent in August -- was "never seen before in the history of Pakistan".

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