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Rana Mashhood claims his statement taken ‘out of context’

LAHORE: A day after making a statement that stirred up a controversy, Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) leader Rana Mashhood says his remarks were taken ‘out of context’.

Speaking to media here, Mashhood however said he represented the sentiments of the general public. He said ‘we always speak of respecting the state institutions.’

Criticising the government, he said it was quite visible that what the newly-elected government did to the country in 40-50 days. He added that what he said was his ‘personal statement’ and it had nothing to do with the party

Shehbaz Sharif earlier in the day confirmed that Mashhood had been served the show-cause notice and added that his statement was deplorable.

Director General of Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) Maj. Gen. Asif Ghafoor yesterday termed the statement of Mashhood as irresponsible and baseless.

“Attribution of an obvious vested statement by Rana Mashhood is baseless and regrettable. Such irresponsible expressions are detrimental to stability in the country,” he said in a statement on his official Twitter handle.

Mashhood made headlines yesterday during a TV interview in which he appeared to suggest that a key institution played a role in Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf’s (PTI) victory in the 2018 elections.

The controversy began with an interview the PML-N leader gave to a private TV channel. During the interview, Mashhood was asked whether the civil-military tensions that had reportedly marred the tenure of the last PML-N government still existed after the end of the party’s rule.

He went on to say that the situation had improved. “I think because ‘they’ have now realised that those whom they had considered horses, are not able to deliver,” he was heard in a video footage as saying.

In another interview later in the day, Mashhood claimed that the PTI government in Punjab would cease to exist within the next two months or so and be replaced by his own party’s setup.

He also denied saying that a “deal” was in the works with the establishment to bring the PML-N back to power in Punjab.

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