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Nawaz Sharif termed his ouster an insult to the masses

11 August, 2017

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ISLAMABAD: Former prime minister Nawaz Sharif on Thursday termed his ouster an insult to the masses as he continued his procession down the GT Road.

Sharif halted in Jhelum for the night, where he addressed the swelling crowd of around 10,000 people. "My government is gone now. Five judges sent me packing in one minute despite the votes of millions of people. Is this not an insult to the millions who voted for me?" he asked.

"The country was drowning in darkness and the economy was on the verge of collapse. Industries were shutting down and there was no electricity. I told you that I will sacrifice my life, but we will take this country forward. Had I not said that? Is the darkness not receding from our cities once again?" he asked.

"I promised you that we will bring peace to Pakistan; have we not brought peace back to the country? Karachi was on the precipice of chaos; look at it now. We brought the lights back to the city. There was dissent in Balochistan, but we brought the parties together and stabilised the province so it could become peaceful," he said.

"Five respectable judges, with one stroke of the pen, sent your prime minister packing. Can you bear this insult?"

"And for what [was I deposed]? Was I implicated in any corruption? Even those judges know that I was not involved in any corruption. You should ask why they removed your leader. This country and the people of Jhelum should ask why they did this."

"These hands are clean! My heart is clean and full of love for this country!" Nawaz Sharif said. "Why did you remove me? Why? I want to ask you: why did you depose me when I am not corrupt?"

"Was I removed for taking Pakistan forward? Because I brought CPEC and ended load-shedding? Because the youth were getting jobs?"

"I do not care for myself, but I cared deeply for the youth of this country. I feared deeply for their feature, and their future was going to be bright [with me]," he said.

“O youth of Pakistan, do not lose heart! Do not be deterred! Our prayers are with you; Nawaz Sharif's prayers are with you!" he said. "Together, we will do something about this state of affairs."

"For 70 years, no prime minister has been allowed to complete his tenure. This is not an insult of your prime ministers, but of the 200 million people of Pakistan. You vote a prime ministers into power, and some dictator and some judge comes along and tears your ballot paper and hands it back to you."

"Are you okay with being insulted like this? Tell me, are you okay with this?" he asked the crowd, to loud responses of "No!".

"Then you will have to change it. If Pakistan is to progress; if the future of our youth is dear to us; if we want to give them a bright future - then we will have to change it. We will have to change everything. You sent me to Islamabad, and now they [the Supreme Court] have sent me back home," he said.

"I do not want you to install me as prime minister again. My self respect is very dear to me. I have no intention of taking power again; but I do want to do something about your future," he said.

"God will change your destiny, and He has made it incumbent upon you to do something about it."

"Is there any law to tackle dictators in this country? They [the dictators] violate the Constitution and the law and then the judges give them legitimacy. The judges tell them 'you did well by sending Nawaz Sharif home'," he said.

"What will you answer to your God? What will you answer to this nation? The people want answers to all these questions," Nawaz said.

"The people will demand answers from all the dictators and the people who have not let this country run," Nawaz said. "Tell me, will you hold them accountable?" he asked. "Will you help take this country forward?"

"We need to ensure that whoever you vote into power, only you have the power to kick them out. I have come to you to get this country back on track; to give the people's mandate some respect. Will you be with me in changing the fate of this country?" he said.

"My agenda will soon be brought to you, and I want the people of Jhelum to be with Nawaz Sharif," he said.

Families crowded on rooftops in Jhelum and celebratory gunshots rang out while the crowd chanted "Look who is here, the tiger is here".

Thousands also lined the road to catch a glimpse of the former leader as his convoy rolled down the GT Road. Sharif is travelling in a bomb-proof vehicle especially designed for the journey.

The convoy was surrounded by heavy security

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