Pakistan: Yet another senior leader from Imran Khan’s party resigns

His resignation comes ahead of the general elections on February 8.

Islamabad: Jailed former prime minister Imran Khan’s party suffered yet another blow on Saturday as its former secretary general quit from the basic membership, saying he “disagreed with the policy of confrontation” with state institutions.

Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) leader Asad Umar took to X as he posted that he has decided to “completely quit politics” after more than one decade in public life.

His resignation comes ahead of the general elections on February 8.

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“As I had already stated publicly earlier that I disagree with the policy of confrontation with state institutions, and such a policy has led to a serious collision with state institutions, which is not in the interest of the country,” Umar further said in his post.

Umar joins the list of senior party leaders who quit politics following the May 9 mayhem, Geo News reported.

There was widespread violence in Pakistan as PTI supporters took to the streets and attacked government buildings and military installations across Pakistan after Khan was arrested in an alleged corruption case from the Islamabad High Court premises.

Umar was one of those arrested on May 10, Geo News report said, adding, he was released from Adiala Jail on the Islamabad High Court’s order after he was directed to submit an undertaking that he “would not become a part of violent protests.”

Subsequently, Umar stepped down as the party’s secretary general and also announced to quit the PTI’s core committee, it said.

Umar has been named in a number of cases related to the May 9 violence and also named in the cipher case but secured bail.

Khan and his former ministerial colleague Shah Mahmood Qureshi have been indicted in the case and are currently incarcerated in Adiala jail.

A number of party leaders, including former Information Minister Fawad Chaudhry, have deserted Khan and his party with some of them forming factions of PTI in different but similar sounding names.

Newspaper Dawn said on Friday, one of the latest additions to the long list of defectors was Sadaqat Ali Abbasi, who resigned from his party position and retired from politics during a live TV interview last month.
Summing up the phenomenon of multiple party leaders not just quitting Khan’s PTI but also politics, Dawn in an analysis about how the party had gone from “heights of popularity to facing obscurity” said, “Ever since the events of May 9, PTI leaders have been leaving the Imran Khan-led party.

“It is almost like clockwork how each member goes through the same process: getting picked up’ or arrested, coming forward, condemning the May 9 violence, and then quitting the party and/or politics altogether. Wash, rinse, repeat,” the newspaper commented.

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