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Is govt going to put Imran Khan under house arrest?

Imran Khan recently announced a long march to Islamabad. There are reports claiming that the government is considering options to counter the march.

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As Imran Khan’s long march to Islamabad looms near, there are reports that the incumbent government is considering putting the former premier under house arrest.

South Asia Index, a data-sharing platform on Twitter, stated that “Pakistan’s government is considering house-arrest of former Prime Minister Imran Khan ahead of his long march towards Islamabad”.

It also quoted PTI Vice-Chairman and former Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi’s alleged warnings of nationwide protests if the PML-N government tries to house arrest Imran Khan.

However, FactCheck Pakistan, an independent platform on Twitter against misinformation, rejected South Asia Index’s reports.

Read more: Pakistan debunks fake news on PM Khan’s visit to Russia

“A government spokesman has said there is no truth in unverified reports circulating on social media claiming that the government is planning to place former Prime Minister Imran Khan under house arrest,” FactCheckPakistan tweeted.

Meanwhile, shortly after, South Asia Index said that it stand by its news.

“There is debate within government circles about the measures to be taken to counter long march. This includes house-arrest of the senior opposition leadership,” South Asia Index tweeted.

Needless to say, it is possible that the government may be looking for options to counter the long march. However, it is unclear whether it is considering house-arrest for Imran Khan. Therefore, the government needs to issue an official statement on the matter for clarification.

Tough time ahead for Islamabad?

Important to note that Imran Khan has been giving the government a very tough time. With consecutive public rallies, the PTI Chairman is making sure the entire country knows his narrative. Imran Khan also has very strong public support and the large crowds at his rallies are a testament to that.

In rejection of the incumbent PML-N government, Imran Khan announced a long march to Islamabad. To clarify, Imran Khan asked his supporters to march toward Islamabad in the last week of May to protest against what he termed a “corrupt and imported government”.

Read more: ‘Imported Hakumat Na-manzoor’ tweeted over three million times

Pertinent to mention, this is not the first time Imran Khan held a long march. Back in 2014, Imran Khan launched a protest march called the “Azadi March” towards Islamabad. The sit-in continued for 126 days in Islamabad.

While Imran Khan was protesting against the then-PM Nawaz Sharif’s election rigging, Pakistan faced many losses during that time. According to reports, the government claimed economic losses directly resulting from the sit-in of between Rs. 500 million and Rs. 800 million.

Moreover, schools also remained closed leading to losses in the education sector. Additionally, there were also violent clashes between the police and the protestors.