ISPR DG Major-General Asif Ghafoor asked a number of questions from the leaders of the Pashtun Tahafuz Movement during his press conference in Rawalpindi on Monday.
He remarked that the demands made by the PTM were not theirs. The leaders were warned that no one can fight the state.
PTM is a social movement which has demanded a reduction in the number of check posts in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, clearance of mines and recovery of missing persons, said Ghafoor.
“Neither the demands nor problems are theirs, it is of our Pathan brothers who live there. They don’t even live there. And who would want restoration, development and employment opportunities and the happiness of people living there more than us [the army]. The problems of the locals, who live there, are genuine,” Ghafoor said.
“I have a few questions for them [PTM]. Let me presents my questions. The security institutions have these questions,” he said.
“On its website, PTM has given details of the donations that they collect from Pathans in Dubai, Saudi Arabia, wherever they are living. I want to ask them that the details that they have given there [on the website], they have a lot more money than that. They should tell you [media] how much money they have. And where they got the money from,” he asked.
For the finances on March 22, 2018, Ghafoor asked how much money NDS gave to them to continue their protest. “Where was the money given and where’s it now?” he questioned.
The ISPR chief had questions about the funds for PTM’s first protest in Islamabad in 2018 – how much money did RAW give to them for that? How was it delivered? Where was it spent?
He said PTM should be asked which of Manzoor Pashteen’s relatives went to the Indian consulate on April 8, 2018 in Kandahar. “He also had a friend with him. How much money was given to them and how was it delivered to Pakistan? On May 8, 2018, how much money did the Indian consulate in Jalalabad give for the protest rally at Torkham. Where’s that money? How was it delivered?” he asked.
Ghafoor wanted to know what Muhammad Ismail Yoon of Zhwandoon TV has to do with the PTM. He asked how much money Indian diplomats gave to them [PTM] in May, 2018 and how it was delivered.
“How much money are they getting through hawala/hundi (money laundering) from Afghanistan and Dubai?” he asked.
“Hajir Mir Afghan Safi in Kabul, not Saleem Safi (quipped DG), and Naseeb Zaadran in Dubai – what do with these people have to do with you people? Do they support you? And how do they support you?”
He asked how much money NDS gave PTM on March 31, 2019, for the Chehlum of Arman Luni and Peshawar’s rally. “How did it reach you and how was it spent?”
This was about finances. “What do these have to with Lar and Bar? They were talking about three demands; mines, missing persons and check posts. How did the slogan about Lar and Bar come about?” Ghafoor questioned.
The ISPR DG wanted answers to why Mashal Khan Takkar had come from Canada to Kabul? He wanted to know what connections PTM has with the Baloch separatists.
“SP Tahir Dawar is martyred in Afghanistan, the government of Pakistan is in talks with the government of Afghanistan about the return of his dead body, it has a procedure. In what capacity were you talking over there on how the body should be given to you – the tribal level? It is the government’s business. Is it a matter between two countries or your personal affair? Why did you ask them not to handover the body to government officials?” he said.
“You’re Pakistan’s MNA. Pakistani laws are implemented on you. How could you forcefully cross the border into Afghanistan and take people along? Which law allows you to instigate people, organise a rally and say I have to go to Afghanistan today?” he asked.
He said whoever speaks in support of the government or army in that area, is killed, asking why they are killed. “Why are only people speaking in support of the army targeted?”
TTP’s Ameer, Mufti Noor Wali, says PTM and TTM are the same thing, said Ghafoor, asking why TTP gives statements in support of PTM? “We have conducted operations against TTP. So many civilians and army personnel were killed and injured in the fight against them – why is your and their narrative the same?”