Former Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan blamed establishment figures for the plot to kill him, saying the unnamed agencies were undermining the country’s democracy.
A day after surviving a shooting at a political rally outside the town of Gujranwala in Punjab province, Khan gave a speech at a hospital in the city of Lahore, where he was recuperating from his injuries. Sitting in a wheelchair, the cricket star-turned-politician named three main people behind the attack.
The former Pakistani leader suffered a fracture in his right leg as a result of stray bullet injuries, Dr. Faisal Sultan told reporters. Sultan showed X-rays showing a fracture in Khan’s right leg, and bullet fragments embedded in both sides of his thigh.
Without offering any evidence, Khan blamed Prime Minister Shabaz Sharif, Interior Minister Rana Sanaullah and Major General Faisal, a senior intelligence official. CNN is reaching out to all three men for comment.
Khan on Tuesday accused the trio of being responsible for the plot, in a statement shared by senior PTI leader Asad Umar, who said he had spoken to Khan recently. In a televised appearance on Thursday, Sanaullah called Khan’s allegations “serious”.
Khan said he knew about the plan to kill him a day before it happened. He further said that “the agency was not allowing democracy to function in Pakistan”.
Thursday’s attack killed one person, injured several others and sparked protests among Khan’s supporters.
Video of the alleged attack shows Khan scrambling from an open truck as shots rang out, sending members of his party scrambling for cover.
A bullet hit Khan in the leg, senior Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) leader Asad Umar said, adding: “Yes, he has been shot, there are batteries in his leg, the bone is chipped. He has also been shot in the thigh.” .
A man suspected of firing shots at the demonstration was arrested on Thursday, according to police.
Khan has called on the public to protest against the three officials who orchestrated his attack until they resign.
“As long as these three men do not resign, you have to protest, against injustice, you have to wage a jihad against them, jihad means against injustice,” Khan said on Friday.
Khan said that as soon as he recovers from the shooting attack, he will resume the so-called Long March to Islamabad demanding early elections. It was the seventh day of the nationwide tour that started in Lahore on October 28 and was supposed to end in Islamabad after touring several cities in Pakistan.
It is among a number of public gatherings the former Pakistan cricket captain has held since he stepped down as prime minister in April. During this time, he has repeatedly claimed, without any evidence, that the United States was behind his loss of power.