The names in the FIR

At long last, an FIR of the assassination attempt on Imran Khamn was registered, and at longer last the Long March was restarted, with Imran Khan addressing a daily rally enroute via television.

I would suspect the PTI is distancing itself from the FIR on legal advice. A delay of four days in the filing of the FIR leaves almost no chance of a conviction. However, if the PTI claims that it wanted to register the FIR, but the police refused to do so because of whom it wished to name,it might cover the delay.

Frankly though, I suspect Imran of doing his best to get his assailant acquitted. I mean, his refusal to have a medicolegal exam, his refusal to let the container be impounded as case property, his omitting to have the recovery from his leg of bullets… they all add up to him making the assailant get off, even though he was caught virtually in the act.

I’m also intrigued by the insistence of the PTI on naming senior officials, which goes beyond just stubborn-ness, or a desire to extract political mileage. I think there is a hidden wellspring of concern for the Wazirabad police, a desire that their children do not have to go hungry, and that there is no burden on Imran’s pocket, or on that of his donors. If those names had been included, surely they would have paid good money, a healthy sum, to get a clean chit from the police. That might explain why Imran is not putting forward any evidence. Hemust have some, or he wouldn’t have insisted so hard on their being nominated.

The PTI has control, so if the offending three are arrested, I suppose their interrogations would be conducted by Shahbaz Gill and Azam Swati. And by the way, there was some speculation about why Imran wore dark glasses all the time, even at night. There was a lot of ill-natured speculation about him using stuff that would make them bloodshot, or red-rimmed, much as there was vicious speculation about why he wouldn’t go to a government hospital (he didn’t want their labs finding any illegal substance in his blood samples). Actually, dark glasses at night are a Mianwali fashion statement. There should also be a Rayban or Gucci sticker which he was careful not to peel off.

It isn’t cold enough, but wait for him to use some men’s suiting, with the brand name displayed in a thin strip on side, as a shawl, and all you want is for him to have cheekoos (pieces of leather which make an irritating squeak with every step) inserted into his Peshawaris, and he will be hailed as a well dressed man-about-town all the way from Mochh to Isakhel, from Piplan to Kundian.

By the way, I wonder if TV has different rules than newspapers. I couldn’t help noticing that the two journalists killed before and during Imran’s Long March, Arshad Sharif and Sadaf Naeem, were TV journalists. Atrshad Sharif had been a newspaperman before joining TV, but I don’t know if he was taught the basic rule: “Never become part of the story.” The idea was that you couldn’t oil out of filing a story with the excuse that you had been killed. And if you weren’t alive to file the story, who would?

Well, the take-home from the T20 World Cup final is that not only have we lost, but we have been deprived of the boons of Babar Azam as PM. He has not only been spared having to go on a Long March after being turned out of office, but having to father an illegitimate daughter, or to eat organic food.He’ll also have to marry three times.  Well, different pages will prevail.

Somehow, I now get what the whole struggle of the captaincy was. Attempts to get on the same page?

I know one person who’s OK with this final: Rishi Sunak. He supported England with a good conscience, because opposing Pakistan would go down well with those in India who were happy at his becoming PM. The England-India semifinal must have been tough for him, and he probably said he deidn’t ;ile cricket,but preferred soccer.



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