ISI helping Imran a comical accusation: Pak daily

Opposition leader Nawaz Sharif has claimed that Pakistan`s spy agency ISI was supporting Imran Khan.

Islamabad: Opposition leader Nawaz Sharif`s claim that Pakistan`s spy agency ISI was supporting Imran Khan was a "comical accusation", a Pakistani daily said on Tuesday.

The Pakistan Muslim League (Nawaz) held a rally in Faisalabad on Sunday in response to the Imran Khan-led Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) mammoth rally in Lahore on October 30.

In an editorial, Daily Times said that whilst the "turnout was nowhere near the numbers the PTI was able to boast for its rally, Nawaz Sharif was no less thundering and accusatory in his tirade against a `certain political party`, which he claimed is supported by the country`s intelligence agencies".

"It is no secret that the party he is pointing fingers at is the one party that showed (Nawaz Sharif) that his vote bank in Punjab is open to being swayed - the PTI."

Nawaz Sharif said, "Intelligence agencies were `transporting` people to partake in the rallies of the political party in question just to up the numbers".

The editorial said: "Now, we all know that this is a comical accusation."

"When the PTI held its rally... young, old, professional, religious and liberal people from all over Punjab all stood up, switched off their daily lives and travelled to the centre of Lahore to hear Imran Khan speak.”

"This was not because he was Imran Khan, a seasoned politician; this turnout was because they thought he was the answer to their disillusionment, their liberation from the quagmire that politics in Pakistan has become now."

It went on to say that while criticism is all well and good, "but when it becomes the only approach to your jaded vote bank, Nawaz Sharif ought to rethink his strategy".

The editorial noted that some of Nawaz Sharif`s recommendations were quite apt.

He said that the Army and intelligence agencies needed to quit playing any role in the country`s political setup.

"This is a very welcome suggestion and should be taken seriously as Army interference in the political process has hampered the nation`s transition to democracy no end," the editorial added.

IANS