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Pakistan

Pakistanis saddened by appointment of controversial Ijaz Shah as federal interior

Appointment of retired brigadier and ex-IB chief Ijaz Shah as federal interior minister by Prime Minister Imran Khan has shocked and saddened the peace-loving patriot Pakistanis because of nexus between him and terrorist outfits.
Even former prime minister Benazir Bhutto had named him in a letter as someone who should be investigated if she was assassinated. She suspected him to be conspiring to eliminate her.
Talking to the media earlier this month, PPP leader Palwasha Khan said that Ijaz Shah was the one who worked for General Musharraf and had links with Al Qaeda and Taliban. She cited that Ms Bhutto had “nominated him as her possible assassin”.
Omar Saeed Sheikh, who masterminded the kidnapping of Wall Street Journal reporter Daniel Pearl, had surrendered through Brig Shah.He is also criticised for alleged links with Lashkar-e-Jhangvi/ASWJ, etc.
Gen Musharraf had named Brig Shah as high commissioner to Australia, but Canberra refused to accept his nomination, forcing the government to withdraw it.
Now, the number of Musharraf’s ruling team members in Prime Minister Imran Khan’s team has risen to sixteen. They are federal ministers, ministers of state, advisers, special assistants and the attorney general of Pakistan. It will further go up if the some key members of provincial cabinets, including Punjab Chief Minister Chaudhry Pervez Elahi and Aleem Khan are counted.
Ijaz Shah’s name was being floated as the next national security adviser (NSA) after the post fell vacant.
Controversial Ijaz Shah has always evinced interest in politics and made failed attempts to become Member of the National Assembly but lost to his powerful rival Rai Mansab Ali Khan (late) of the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) in 2013 and then to his daughter, Dr Shizra Mansab, in 2015.
However, he finally won the last general elections with a margin of 2,405 votes from NA-118 Nankana Sahib. Syed Afzal Hussain of the Tehreek-e-Labbaik Pakistan, which is nowhere for quite some time, had secured 49,345 votes as against Ijaz Shah’s 63,818 ballots and Dr Shizra’s 61,413 votes.
Brig Ijaz Shah’s appointment to the key position of Interior Minister has stirred political controversy because he was accused of using the IB for political victimisation when he had been director general of the Intelligence Bureau (IB) from 2004 to 2008..
As the home secretary of Punjab, Ijaz Shah was accused of midwifing the formation of the PML-Q and PPP-Patriots.
Keeping in view of his background, peace-loving Pakistanis are shocked and dismayed over his appointment as interior minister.

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