A top official during the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Government has said Pakistan would have economically collapsed if the Imran Khan-led regime had completed its tenure, Geo News reported.
The PTI-led Government’s tenure was cut short in April 2022. The Government was ousted after Imran Khan was removed as the Prime Minister through a no-confidence motion, paving the way for Shehbaz Sharif and allies to come into power.
According to the incumbent rulers, who were then in the Opposition, one of the primary reasons behind ousting the Imran Khan-led Government was economic mismanagement and the increasing burden of inflation on the masses.
Pakistan’s former Federal Bureau of Revenue (FBR) chairman Shabbar Zaidi told Geo News’ Shahzeb Khanzada on July 28: “Had this [PTI] Government continued, the party would not have even secured 5 per cent votes as the country would have economically collapsed.”
The tax collection body’s ex-chief said he had advised Imran Khan to rectify his Government’s shortcomings and “settle things, but he was not in the mood of listening”.
Shabbar Zaidi, whose time as the federal tax collection authority’s chief lasted from 2019 to 2020, revealed that when he pointed out the economic crises Pakistan was headed towards during the PTI’s tenure, Imran Khan had removed Asad Umar as the Finance Minister.
The former FBR head also spoke about influentials forcing him to drop cases against people close to them or those who were politically “important”. Shabbar Zaidi further said that he “mistakenly” sent a notice to a landowner in Multan. “I asked him to reconcile his wealth with his agricultural income.”
In response, 40 parliamentarians “barged into my office”, led by then-Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi, he said, as per Geo News.
Shabbar Zaidi said ex-lawmaker Sardar Nasrullah Khan Dreshak, during the meeting, told him that the people in his office were “MNAs from South Punjab, and the Government cannot continue without them”.
“I have seen a lot of Governments […] leave him […] you’re a kid now,” Zaidi quoted Dareshak as telling him, Geo News reported.
(with inputs from ANI)