ISLAMABAD: Former army chief Qamar Javed Bajwa and retired Lt. Gen. Faiz Hameed, director general of the Inter-Service Intelligence (ISI) agency under him, aided former prime minister Imran Khan until their retirement in November of last year, claimed Minister for Interior Rana Sanaullah Khan.
The minister’s comments, made during an interview on Geo News’ “Naya Pakistan” programme, follow recent assertions made by Maryam Nawaz, senior vice president of Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N).
Interestingly, Khan has repeatedly accused the former army chief of playing a “double game” against his government. In an interview in December, Khan said he committed a “big mistake” by extending Bajwa’s tenure for another three years in 2019, expressing regret over putting his trust in him.
He had said he believed everything Bajwa would tell him at the time due to their shared goal of saving the country, but felt he was eventually betrayed and did not realise how the lies were spoken to him.
During the interview on Saturday, Sanaullah was asked about his thoughts on Nawaz’s remarks that her party’s government started after November 28 when Bajwa retired following the end of his second term.
He claimed the “facilitators” of the opposition Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) party had retired on that date and that Khan was being made to do “all agitation” and was “being provided with all the consultation” prior to the retirement.
Sanaullah also commented on the controversial appointment of Bajwa’s successor, Gen. Syed Asim Munir, and claimed that the PTI’s long march was relevant to the appointment. He also said his party “failed” Khan’s long marches in May and November last year due to being in power.
When asked about the possible benefit to the alleged facilitators as they were “already retiring”, the minister hesitated to elaborate, saying only the retired leaders were “not actually retiring.”