The ousted Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan has been shot

The ousted Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan has been shot in the shin in a “clear assassination attempt”.

  • Former cricketer Imran Khan was shot in the shin
  • “It was a clear assassination attempt,” says the adjutant
  • Khan led the march to Islamabad to demand snap elections
  • Pakistan has a long history of political violence

LAHORE, Nov 3 (Portal) – Former Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan was shot in the shin on Thursday when his anti-government protest convoy was attacked in the east of the country in what his aides said was a clear assassination attempt.

The 70-year-old Khan, who was ousted as prime minister in April, had been in a mile-long protest for six days, standing and waving to thousands of cheering supporters from the roof of a container truck when gunfire rang out.

Several members of his convoy were injured in the attack in Wazirabad, nearly 200 km (120 miles) from Islamabad, and Information Minister Marriyum Aurangzeb said a suspect had been arrested.

“It was a clear assassination. Khan was hit but he’s stable. There was a lot of bleeding,” Fawad Chaudhry, a spokesman for Khan’s Pakistani Tehreek-e-Insaf Party (PTI), told Portal.

“If the shooter hadn’t been stopped by people there, the entire PTI leadership would have been wiped out.”

In a statement, the military called the shooting “highly condemnable.” Khan had accused the military of backing a plan to oust him from power. Last week, the military held an unprecedented press conference to deny the claims.

“I heard an explosion of gunfire, after which I saw Imran Khan and his helpers fall onto the truck,” witness Qazzafi Butt told Portal.

“Later, a gunman fired a single shot but was grabbed by an activist from Khan’s party.”

In alleged footage of the shooting, which is being broadcast by multiple channels, a man with a pistol is grabbed from behind by one of the people at the gathering. Then he tries to escape.

TV stations showed an alleged shooter who appeared to be in his 20s or 30s. He said he wanted to kill Khan and acted alone.

“He (Khan) was misleading people and I couldn’t take it,” the suspect said in the video. The Minister of Information confirmed that the footage was taken by the police.

No one had been charged with the attack.

[1/2] Ousted Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan gestures as he addresses supporters during a rally in Lahore, Pakistan April 21, 2022. Portal/Mohsin Raza//File Photo

Khan had whipped up large crowds on his way to the capital, Islamabad, in a campaign to overthrow the government of rival Shehbaz Sharif.

A member of Khan’s party said there were reports that one person had been killed in the attack.

Khan’s assistant Chaudhry wrote on Twitter: “It was a well planned assassination attempt on Imran Khan, the assassin planned to kill Imran Khan and the leadership of PTI, it wasn’t 9MM, it was blown up from an automatic weapon, about that there is no two opinions had narrowly escaped.”

demonstrators on the streets

Pakistan has a long history of political violence. Former Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto was assassinated in a gunshot and bomb attack in December 2007 after she held a campaign rally in the city of Rawalpindi, near Islamabad.

Her father and former Prime Minister Zulfikar Ali Bhutto was hanged in the same city in 1979 after being deposed in a military coup.

Local media showed footage of Khan waving to the crowd after being evacuated from his vehicle as residents ran and shouted after the shooting.

He was taken to a hospital in Lahore as protesters took to the streets in some parts of the country and PTI leaders demanded justice.

PTI colleague Faisal Javed, who was also injured and had bloodstains on his clothes, told Geo TV from the hospital: “Several of our colleagues are injured. We heard that one of them is dead.”

Prime Minister Sharif condemned the shooting and ordered an immediate investigation.

Since Khan was ousted by a parliamentary vote, he has held rallies across Pakistan and stirred up opposition to a government struggling to pull the economy out of the crisis Khan’s government left it in.

Khan had planned to slowly lead the motorized caravan north up the Grand Trunk Road to Islamabad, enlisting more support along the way before reaching the capital.

“I want you all to attend. This is not for politics or personal gain or to overthrow the government… it is meant to bring real freedom to the country,” Khan said in a video message on the eve of the march.

Additional reporting by Aftab Ahmed, Sudipto Ganguly and Tanvi Mehta; Writing from Krishna N. Das; Adaptation by John Stonestreet and Nick Macfie

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