ISPR underestimating Imran‘s grudge of losing power because Lt Gen Faiz was not ISI Chief to provide money trails etc to opposition MNAs. By Hem Raj Jain

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Imran must be repenting why he caved-in to Army Chief Gen Bajwa and why he didn’t listen to Bushra Begum who in 2021(as reported widely in media) wanted to retain Lt Gen Faiz Hameed as ISI Chief

-- Whatever twist the national and international media may give about the reasons behind the current explosive political crisis in Pakistan but it is the after effect of the loss of power to former PM Imran who believes that the Pak - military didn’t support him as per the letter & the spirit of the Constitution. This is the reason Imran more than once in public meetings has castigated Pak - military for ‘neutrality’ by saying that only animals can be neutral hence ISPR took exception to 'maligning' of Pak - military as reported at https://www.dawn.com/news/1688624/army-takes-strong-exception-to-attempts-made-to-drag-its-leadership-in-political-discourse-ispr .

Obviously Pak - military is feeling the heat of the current explosive political crisis in Pakistan hence is constrained to issue press releases and press statements in quick succession, the latest being as given [because while addressing a rally last week in Fateh Jang, Maryam Nawaz had also criticized Lt Gen Hameed while referring to Imran Khan’s recent podcast appearance where he had said the intelligence (ISI) chief was the “eyes and ears” of the government] and where ISPR had to issue clarification about Lt Gen Faiz (the former ISI Chief) https://www.pakistantoday.com.pk/2022/05/12/ispr-says-ill-considered-comments-by-politicians-about-lt-gen-faiz-hameed-are-inappropriate/ . 

Earlier the ISPR was obliged to issue press statement [in view of Imran's veiled attack of comparing Army Chief Gen Bajwa with Mir Zaafar due to which the National Assembly passed a resolution against Imran as reported at https://www.dawn.com/news/1688807 ]. This criss-cross of verbal missiles is going-on because people in Pakistan and outside have not understood the feeling & believe of Imran that he has been cheated and has been removed unfairly from power and this is the real reason behind this current explosive political crisis in Pakistan, as explained  below:-

(1)- First and foremost the present situation should be understood. On the face of it the Shehbaz - government is not only legal but legitimate too. Because even if there was alleged US-conspiracy to dislodge Imran - govt it was a matter between US - govt & Pakistan - govt (the then Imran - govt) and Member of Parliament (MNAs) had nothing to do with it. Hence no-confidence motion brought by MNAs was legal & legitimate unless these MNAs committed some crime which had a potential of disqualifying them. Therefore the govt of PM Shehbaz Sharif (after no-confidence against Imran - govt without vote of defectors from PTI,) is a legal & legitimate government. 

(2)- But Shehbaz govt is legitimate only because the Imran - govt (during about the relevant two months when it was in power) couldn’t  provide any actionable proof of any money trail etc between USA and these MNAs. Imran believes that had Lt Gen Faiz been as ISI Chief he certainly would have provided such money trails and other incriminating evidences against opposition MNAs in view of (as per Imran, his cabinet colleagues, even Pak mainstream media) what was going-on (in the run-up to no-confidence vote)  in the US Embassy & Consulates, in Sindh House, in 5 star hotels, etc. 

(3)- At the top of it once illegitimate (in Imran’s eyes because there was no ISI Chief to provide money trails etc to opposition MNAs by the USA) government of Shehbaz came in power at center then it installed Punjab government which may be legal (due to court order) but is illegitimate. There is a principle of jurisprudence that ‘no one should be allowed to take benefit & advantage of his or her wrongs’. The Punjab incumbent CM Hamza got a majority with 197 votes with the support of 26 defectors from PTI and they are liable to be disqualified. Hence the majority support base of Hamza is illegitimate in the eyes of the people / PTI.

(4)- To make the matters worse for Imran in unconstitutional way the Punjab Governor is removed from office by Shehbaz government as explained below:-

(i)-- As far as Punjab Governor Cheema is concerned he is right on two counts (A)- The resignation of CM Usman Buzdar (of PTI) is invalid because it was neither in Buzdar’s handwriting nor was it addressed to the Governor as per constitutional requirement (B)- Defection of 26 PTI members makes CM Hamza-govt illegitimate

(ii)-As far as President Alvi is concerned he is right due to three reasons:- 

(A)- It is not necessary for appointing authority and dismissing authority to be the same. For example Judges of the Supreme Court and High Courts are appointed in all democracies by “Supreme Judicial Council” or other constitutional body / authority but these judges can be removed only through impeachment by Parliament. Hence as per the Constitution of Pakistan the Governor can be appointed by Prime Minister + President as per Article 101 (1)- which reads as “There shall be a Governor for each Province who shall be appointed by the President on the advice of the Prime Minister ''. But a Governor can be removed only by the President as per Article 101 (3)- which reads as “The Governor shall hold office during the pleasure of the President”. Hence the Prime Minister or cabinet doesn’t come into the picture as far as the removal of the Governor is concerned.

(B)- For removing the Governor Cheema by notification as reported at https://gnnhd.tv/news/13044/omer-sarfraz-cheema-removed-as-punjab-governor  the Article 48 (A) is quoted which reads as - [in the exercise of his functions the President shall act (on and) in accordance with the advice of the cabinet or the Prime Minister]. But as per  Article 48 (2) which reads as - [Notwithstanding anything contained in clause (1), the President shall act in his discretion in respect of any matter in respect of which he is empowered by the Constitution to do so and the validity of anything done by the President in his discretion shall not be called in question on any ground whatsoever]. Obviously the removal of the Governor as per Article 101 (3) is the discretion of the President hence a per Article 48 (2) the President is under no constitutional obligation to heed the advice of the Prime Minister or cabinet for the removal of the Governor

( C)- The President Alvi rightly said that unless the Governor commits some illegal or unconstitutional act the President has no valid reason to remove the governor. In India also when a new government comes at the center it does not remove what to talk of the President (which is difficult because a President can be removed through impeachment which requires two third majority in Parliament) but even many Governors are also not removed (though it is easy to remove them through President).  Even the Higher Judiciary in India has taken a position that if the government changes at center that doesn't mean that govt automatically gets right to change the Governors.

(4)- Everybody knows that in November 2021 when Lt Gen Faiz was appointed as Corps Commander Peshawar before that there was much publicized controversy about Imran’s desire to retain Lt Gen Faiz as ISI Chief because Imran believed that Lt Gen Faiz as ISI Chief was crucial for his survival as Prime Minister. At that time Imran was even criticized that he was under the influence of the black-magic (jadu-tona) of his wife Bushra Begum on whose advice he wanted to retain Lt Gen Faiz as ISI Chief (as reported also at https://hindustannewshub.com/world-news/imran-khan-became-bhasmasur-for-general-bajwa-clashed-at-the-behest-of-a-sorcerers-wife/ ) . But now it has proved whether it was the clairvoyance of Bushra Begum or the political insight of Imran, they were right in believing that Lt Gen Faiz was necessary for the protection of Imran's office of Prime Minister.

5)- It is a matter of common knowledge that in Pakistan the ISI is the premier intelligence agency. Hence, had Lt Gen Faiz been the ISI Chief he certainly would have found such money trail etc to opposition MNAs and that would have helped Imran Khan in invoking not merely Article 5 but even the Article 6 of the constitution (which has potential of disqualifying the no-confidence-bringing MNAs). 

(6)- Imran Govt on April 9 (when NA was called in session, as per SCP order) then could tell the Speaker that prima-facie offenses by opposition (under Articles 5 & 6) have potential of disqualifying opposition MNAs, hence till the final outcome of detailed investigation into these offenses, the no-confidence resolution be quashed which the Speaker would have done again and then Imran would have again advised the President to dissolve the NA which the President would have again done and would have again ordered elections. In such case the SCP couldn’t intervene due to three reasons (i)- Actions under Article 6 can’t be reviewed by SCP (ii)-  SCP wouldn’t have liked to be seen as giving advantage to opposition MNAs of their (prima-facie) wrongs about Article 5 & 6 and (iii)- If still SCP interfered in the proceedings of Article 6 then for the misconduct the concerned Judges of SCP could be got impeached through a reference by President  to ‘Supreme Judicial Council’.

If the ISPR thinks that Imran ('Taliban Khan' as the West portrays him) will forget & forgive the way Pak - military publicly pressurized Imran in 2021 for removing Lt Gen Faiz from ISI Chief (due to which, as mentioned above, Imran has lost the office of the Prime Minister) then it is living in its make believe world. Rather it will do good to Pak - military if it prepares itself for more formidable political moves from Imran which will help him in coming to power again even despite Pak - military.

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