Pakistan govt books Imran Khan for terrorism, suspends internet in major cities

Islamabad: Former Pakistan prime minister Imran Khan has landed in deep trouble. The Pakistan government has booked the Pakistan Tekreek-e-Insaf (PTI) leader under a stringent anti-terrorism law.

With Imran Khan about to be arrested, internet connections have been disrupted in major cities across Pakistan in anticipation of possible law and order problems by PTI workers and supporters.

The latest move by the Pakistan government follows weeks of nationwide agitation by Imran Khan and the PTI against prime minister Shehbaz Sharif and the Pakistan Army.

Earlier, Pakistan’s Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (PEMRA) had banned the broadcast of live speeches of former Prime Minister Imran Khan with immediate effect. This action has been taken after Imran Khan had threatened government institutions and officials of Pakistan while addressing a rally in Islamabad on Saturday.

“Imran Khan’s speech is a violation of Article 19 of the Constitution. Imran Khan, while addressing a public meeting, had threatened to register a case against top police officials, a woman magistrate, the Election Commission of Pakistan and political opponents for the behavior of PTI leader Shahbaz Gill. Imran Khan’s speech was in violation of Article 19 of the Constitution. Imran Khan’s speeches are likely to disturb the peace,” PEMRA said in a statement on Saturday.

“Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan in his speeches and statements is making baseless allegations through his provocative statements against state institutions and officials. His statements are likely to cause law and order maintenance and disturb public peace,” the statement added.

PEMRA placed this condition regarding broadcasting

“In exercise of the delegated powers of the Authority contained in Section 27 (a) of the Ordinance 2002, as amended by the PEMRA (Amendment) Act 2007, the broadcast of Imran Khan’s live speech on all satellite TV channels is prohibited with immediate effect,” the PEMRA said.

However, PEMRA also said that Imran Khan’s recorded speech will be allowed to be telecast only after ensuring monitoring and editorial control.

Political parties demand legal action against Imran Khan

The Pakistani army has not said anything about Imran Khan’s statement, while political parties like Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz, Pakistan People’s Party, Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam Fazal and Mutahida Qaumi Movement threatened a woman judge and threatened the police. They have demanded the judiciary to take legal action against Imran Khan and his associates for intimidating the officials.

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