Will Imran Khan become 1st Pak PM to serve a full term? No-confidence vote today to decide | 10 points

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A man watches news channels broadcast a live address to the nation by Pakistan’s Prime Minister Imran Khan, in Islamabad, Pakistan

Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan will face a no-confidence motion, which was tabled by the Leader of the Opposition today (April 3, Sunday) as the National Assembly will vote. His key allies have deserted him and a sizeable number of rebel lawmakers vowing to vote against him. 

Here are 10 points to note ahead of the no-trust vote:

  1. Hours before the voting, Khan urged the country’s youth to stage “peaceful protests” against a “foreign conspiracy” allegedly hatched against his government. He told them that he has “more than one plan” for Sunday’s crucial vote on the no-confidence motion. During a live question and answer session, Khan said right now Pakistan is standing on a “decisive point.” Khan said he will take legal action against those who “betrayed the nation”. “I met my lawyers today and we have a plan. We won’t let them go free. All of them will be punished. We will decide by tonight the kind of legal action we want to take against them.”
  2. Pakistan Punjab Province will also vote for a new CM, as Usman Buzdar had quit earlier on Monday, after a delegation of senior lawmakers had submitted a no-trust motion against him in the provincial assembly. Ahead of the vote, the PM warned on Twitter, “All PTI MPAs in Punjab must ensure they vote for Ch Pervez Elahi in the CM Punjab election tomorrow. Any PTI MPA going against party direction, including abstaining from vote, will be disqualified and will face strict disciplinary action.”
  3. No Pakistani prime minister has ever completed a full five-year term in office. Also, no prime minister in Pakistan’s history has ever been ousted through a no-confidence motion, and Khan is the third premier to face the challenge.
  4. Khan needs 172 votes in the lower house of 342 to foil the Opposition’s bid to topple him. However, the Opposition claims it has the support of 175 lawmakers and the prime minister should immediately resign.
  5. Since coming to power in 2018, Khan has miserably failed to address the basic problem of keeping the prices of commodities in control, allowing the Opposition to target his government as inefficient.
  6. On Friday, Khan claimed he has credible information that his life is in danger but asserted that he is not afraid.
  7. In an interview with ARY News, Khan also revealed that the “establishment” (the Pakistani military) gave him three options – no-confidence vote, early elections or resignation as the Prime Minister. Khan has accused the Opposition of playing in foreign hands and indicated that if he survived the no-confidence vote, he would call for early elections.
  8. The prime minister has reiterated what he had said in a televised address to the nation on March 31 that a foreign country not only expressed disapproval over his premiership but also demanded that he be ousted through a no-confidence vote so that Pakistan be “forgiven”. Khan said that his trip to Russia, country’s refusal to be part of the western bloc, country’s inclination towards China and his efforts towards making an independent foreign policy for Pakistan have irked the west, which is why they have plotted a plan with the opposition parties to take him off power.
  9. Meanwhile, the Dawn newspaper, in an editorial noted that Khan Khan seems willing to go to any lengths in his determination to convert his looming defeat in Sunday’s vote of no-confidence into a moment of political martyrdom. 
  10. Pakistan’s Interior Minister Sheikh Rasheed revealed on Saturday that even if the no-confidence motion against Prime Minister Imran Khan succeeds, the premier will continue to hold office until a new leader is sworn-in, Dawn reported.
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(with agencies inputs)

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