Web Desk Published: 26 May at 11:22 | Updated: 26 May at 13:55
PTI Leaders Abrar Ul Haq and Senator Saifullah Nyazee Quit Party Following May 9 Mayhem
Two prominent leaders of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI), singer-turned-politician Abrar Ul Haq and Senator Saifullah Nyazee, announced their departure from the party on Friday, expressing regret over the May 9 mayhem. This comes in the wake of a security forces crackdown on the PTI following attacks on civil and military institutions, including the General Headquarters in Rawalpindi and the Lahore Corps Commander's House (Jinnah House).
Speaking at a press conference in Lahore, Abrar Ul Haq stated, "I regret standing with Imran Khan." He mentioned his family's political and military background and his desire to do something for the country after gaining fame. Haq expressed his respect for martyrs and highlighted the free education provided to their children at his medical college. He emphasized that he has no desire for fame or position.
In a separate press conference in Islamabad, Senator Saifullah Nyazee announced his departure from the PTI, citing his disturbed state over the events of May 9 and a desire to focus on his family.
Earlier in the day, PTI leader and former Punjab education minister Murad Raas also announced his resignation from the party. Raas laid blame on Khan's advisers in Lahore for the party's current situation and disassociated himself from the PTI's politics of violence. Raas, along with other politicians, announced the formation of a group to continue working for Pakistan's progress.
Additionally, former special assistant to the Punjab chief minister, Firdous Ashiq Awan, condemned the May 9 violence and claimed it was planned at Imran Khan's Zaman Park residence. She announced her exit from the party as well.
The PTI has faced significant backlash and arrests following the violent protests on May 9. The army has called it a "Black Day" and insisted that those involved in attacks on military installations be tried under the Pakistan Army Act and the Official Secrets Act. Several PTI leaders and lawmakers, including Asad Umar, Shireen Mazari, Aamir Mehmood Kiani, and Malik Amin Aslam, have distanced themselves from the party in the aftermath of the May 9 vandalism.
Meanwhile, Defence Minister Khawaja Asif has stated that the federal government is considering imposing a ban on the PTI, citing evidence of "pre-planned" and "coordinated" attacks on public properties and military installations.