OPINION: Imran Khan, a helpless PM tied by shackles of Pakistan Army

Five days after the Pulwama attack, Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan appeared in front of the television sets. In a short video message of slightly more than six minutes, on Tuesday, he denied any link of his country with the Pulwama attack.

On the Jammu-Srinagar National Highway, on 14 February, a convoy of vehicles carrying security personnel was attacked by a vehicle-borne suicide bomber at Lethpora in the Pulwama district, Jammu and Kashmir. The attack resulted in the martyrdom of 40 Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) personnel and the attacker. The responsibility for the attack was claimed by the Pakistan-based Islamist militant group Jaish-e-Mohammed. A Jaish-e-Mohammed member (Adil Ahmad Dar), a localite of Kashmiri, was identified as the attacker.

“Pakistan is moving towards stability. Why at this time we will act in this way? This is a new Pakistan. We do not support terrorism,” said Khan.

“It is in our interest that nobody from our soil spreads violence. I want to tell Indian govt that we will take action if evidence is found against anyone from Pakistan,” he said.

He asked for the evidence from the Indian government and “with a heavy voice” assured that if the same is provided, his government will take action.

However, in the same video message, he cautioned that if India attacks Pakistan, his country will retaliate.

“We have no intentions of war but if India will attack, we will definitely retaliate,” said the PM.

In his worthless video drama, although, he didn’t forget to warn India about the consequences of war; he forgot to mention even a single word of sympathy for those 40 men who lost their lives in the cowardly attack.

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I totally endorse Union Minister Mr. Arun Jaitley’s statement that from Mr. Khan’s message three things are obvious, “First, there is not even a pretext of outright condemnation of the incident. Second, let alone sympathy for the bereaved families, not even lip sympathy for them. And third, a very shallow logic that ‘provide to us actionable intelligence’ as though the origin of crime is not known.”

Now let us come to the “evidence part”.

During the Mumbai terror attack, India provided all necessary evidence to Pakistan but what happened? Mumbai terror attack mastermind Hafiz Saeed is still openly roaming free. Has Pakistan acted? No.

Come on Mr. Khan…you should have come with a more better excuse. I was expecting something better from a sportsperson.

Although in the video message, Mr. Khan tried to put up a brave face (obviously he has to because he is the “Prime Minister” of the country) but the fact is he can not do much. His hands are tied.

We all know that in Pakistan, the military runs the show and a PM does not have much of a choice.

If Pakistan really wants to improve relation with India, first Mr. Khan has to free himself from the shackles of his Army.

And for doing that he must have to garner the support of the people of his country to that great extent that his aura totally eclipses the evil power of his Army. Only then he will be able to act freely and can improve the relationship between the two nations.

Will you be able to do that Mr. Imran Khan?

About the author: Author is Deputy Editor in India TV and tweets at @AnuragSason

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Disclaimer: The views expressed by the author are personal and do not reflect the opinions, beliefs and views of India TV.

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