Ayaz Sadiq stands by his statements, says has more secrets

PML-N leader and former National Assembly speaker, Ayaz Sadiq, on Saturday while talking about his recent speech in the lower house said that he stands by his stance while also mentioning that he was privy to “many secrets” but never made irresponsible statements.

Ayaz Sadiq was referring to a speech he made in the National Assembly this week, in which he suggested that the PTI government had released Indian pilot Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman in capitulation, fearing an imminent attack from India.

Sadiq’s statement was heavily criticised by ministers and by social media users and also prompted the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) chief Major General Babar Iftikhar to hold a presser in which he he sought to “correct the record” regarding the events that surrounded India’s violation of Pakistani airspace last year in February.

Although General Ikftikhar did not name anyone, he said “a statement was given yesterday which tried to distort the history of issues associated with national security,” purportedly in reference to Sadiq’s remarks.

Talking to the media in Lahore alongside Maulana Fazlur Rehman, head of the Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM) and chief of the Jamiat Ulema-i-Islam-Fazl (JUI-F), Sadiq said that the “political colour” given to his statement did not benefit Pakistan’s narrative.

“We can have different thoughts politically but where Pakistan is concerned, the whole nation is united and God willing, will give a splendid answer to India. People may have objections to what I said but the political colour given to it did not benefit Pakistan’s narrative,” he said.

“This selected government tried to support the unsuccessful narrative that was being created in India,” he said, adding that the opposition had “strong reservations” about the government on what he termed its silence on Kashmir and its foreign policy failures.

“But these are political differences. Their attempt to associate my statement with the armed forces of Pakistan was not a service to the country. My statement can be seen and heard in which I talked about this government, which government officials misread by adopting Indian media’s strategies. This is not only a blatant plot against Pakistan but is a disservice to Pakistan,” he said.

“You (the government) have played in the hands of Indian media and you have not done justice to Pakistan. I am standing by my stance and you will see in future, I have many secrets. I had been heading the National Security Committee.”

The PML-N leader added that he had, however, never made irresponsible statements and would never do so in the future as well.

“I want to say about this inefficient government, you can fight any political battles you want but political parties will only agree with you when it comes to Pakistan. I request you to keep the armed forces out of this fight.”

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