Former Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan on Friday, once again applauded India for its independent foreign policy and New Delhi’s purchase of Russian oil in line with its national interests despite Western pressure amid the Ukraine war.
These remarks come as Imran Khan kicks off the Haqiqi Azadi long march from Lahore’s Liberty Chowk to Islamabad on Friday. During his first speech, the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan said that India is able to import oil from Russia at its will however Pakistanis are a slave who failed to make decisions for the welfare of their country’s people.
“The decisions of this nation must be made inside the nation. If Russia is giving cheap oil and if I have the choice to save my countrymen, no one should ask us. No one should be able to tell us. India can take oil from Russia but slave Pakistanis are not allowed. I want to see a free country and justice must prevail and people should be provided safety and security,” Imran Khan said.
In the political struggle of 26 years, Imran Khan said this is the most crucial journey that he is starting. “My aim is only one. We were being freed from the Britishers and it is time we start the Haqiqi Azadi. This is my message to all Pakistanis. This march is not for politics and not for elections or for religion. There is only one motive for the rally that I want to make Pakistan free.”
He stressed that common Pakistanis are suffering. He warned that people will sacrifice everything for saving the country. “Listen to this carefully. People are watching the drama. Inflation has engulfed the country. Imported thieves have done the blunder of inflation. But they (ruling party members) are acquitted of ? 11 crore scam. Their handlers, if they believe, they will be accepted … listen carefully, this country will be able to sacrifice anything.”
This is however not the first time when he praised India. Earlier, Imran Khan lauded India for its independent foreign policy, as the leader slammed Western countries for being critical of India for buying Russian oil.
Since his ouster from power in April, Imran Khan has decried a US-led foreign conspiracy against him. While criticizing the Joe Biden administration, Imran Khan on many occasions lauded India for not giving in to the demand of the West and continuing to purchase Russian oil despite being a “strategic ally” of the US.
During a huge gathering in Lahore earlier, Imran Khan’s PTI party played out a video clip of India’s Foreign Minister S Jaishankar from the Bratislava Forum, held in June, where the Indian minister said that New Delhi will do what is best for their people.
“When the Indian foreign minister was asked not to buy Russian oil. He said who are they to dictate India’s foreign policy. Europe is buying Russia’s oil and people need it. He said that they will continue to buy it,” Imran Khan said while quoting EAM Jaishankar and added “Yeh hota hai aazad mulk.” (This is what an independent nation looks like)
Drawing a comparison between the two countries, the PTI chief slammed the Shehbaz Sharif government for bowing down to US pressure on buying Russian oil.
“We had spoken to Russia about buying cheaper oil but this government has no courage to say no to US pressure. Fuel prices are skyrocketing, people are below the poverty line. I am against this slavery,” Imran Khan said.
“If India which got independence at the same time as Pakistan and if New Delhi can take a firm stand and make their foreign policy as per the need of its people then who are they (Shehbaz Sharif government) who are toeing the line,” Imran Khan said at the gathering.
S Jaishankar’s remarks which Imran Khan referred to was delivered at the GLOBSEC 2022 Bratislava Forum being held in Slovakia in June this year. During the forum held in June, EAM S Jaishankar hit back at the unfair criticism against Indian oil purchase from Russia amid the Ukraine war that has created a knock-off effect on the world economy.
Moreover, lauding India for not buckling under the “US pressure” and buying the discounted oil from Russia, Imran Khan had said that his government was also working on the same thing with the help of an independent foreign policy and slammed Pakistan Muslim League (N)-led government for “running around like a headless chicken with the economy in a tailspin”.
This comes after the Indian government reduced the price of petrol by ? 9.5 per litre and Diesel by ? 7 per litre.
“Despite being part of the Quad, India sustained pressure from the US and bought discounted Russian oil to provide relief to the masses. This is what our government was working to achieve with the help of an independent foreign policy,” Imran Khan tweeted while retweeting an information about reduction of the petrol and diesel prices in India.
Imran Khan said “Mir Jafars and Mir Sadiqs” bowed to the external pressure forcing a regime change, and “are now running around like a headless chicken with the economy in a tailspin.”
Earlier, lauding India as “khuddar quam” (very self-respecting people), Imran Khan has said that no superpower can dictate terms to the neighbouring country, admitting that both New Delhi and Islamabad do not share a good relationship.
“Indians are khuddar quam (very self-respecting people). No superpower can dictate terms to India,” he had said during his national address on the eve of a controversial no-confidence vote that looks certain to dismiss him.