President Alvi says statement related to Gen (retd) Bajwa ‘wrongly attributed’ to him
President Dr Arif Alvi on Monday debunked his statement related to former army chief General (retd) Qamar Javed Bajwa, saying that he was “wrongly attributed” by the media.
In a statement issued by President House, it was stated that President Dr Arif Alvi has taken notice of the statement wrongly attributed to him regarding alleged support extended by the then-army chief to Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) during elections.
“The statement has been quoted out of reference to the context and is Twisted and Self-Concocted,” statement read.
President Alvi’s statement came during a conversation with journalists, leaders of the business community and foreign diplomats at a dinner.
President Dr Arif Alvi, who is also a member of PTI, revealed that former chief of the army staff General (retd) Qamar Javed Bajwa assisted Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan in the Senate and during the elections as well.
President said that he discussed the ‘neutrality’ of the armed forces with new chief of the army staff (COAS) Gen Syed Asim Munir.
While talking about the neutrality, he shared a funny anecdote of the time when he was part of the Jamaat-e-Islami (JI) in 1990s. He said at the time party candidates had to answer the question before submission of their nomination papers whether or not they consumed liquor.
He recalled how one of the candidates agreed he did consume liquor and another said he had quit it just two days back.
“I mention this anecdote to all friends of mine who wear uniform, just to tell them if you’ve left politics – you’ve left it only the day before yesterday,” President said.
The president furthered that if the army had become apolitical, it was the time politicians took charge of the situation.
Referring to the forced disappearances and mistreatment with journalists during PTI’s government, Dr Alvi said even people like Shireen Mazari had to concede they had no power.
The president went on to say that there was a lot of interference in the affairs of the National Accountability Bureau (NAB). He said politicians’ maturity needed to match with the situation.
Senior Journalist asked the President whether Imran Khan had ever thought of dismissing Gen Bajwa. At this, the President responded: “No, I don’t think there was anything like that, it was a rumour.”
When asked why and when relations between Khan and Gen (retd) Bajwa soured, President Alvi replied that he was still looking for the answer, but it was probably October last year and then it was April or May this year.