PESHAWAR -  Terming Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif a major hurdle in realising a “new Pakistan”, Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) chief Imran Khan has said that the cancer of corruption was eating away at the very fabric of the country.

“As long as Nawaz Sharif is the prime minister, it is impossible to bring change in the country,” the PTI chief said while addressing a public rally in Nowshera on Friday. PTI Vice-President Shah Mahmood Qureshi, Secretary General Jehangir Tareen and Awami Muslim League chief Sheikh Rashid Ahmad and other leaders were also present.

Khan said that he has no personal enmity with PM Nawaz but he wanted a corruption-free Pakistan where the poor people could get relief and prosper. “For this dream to come true, I have been struggling for the last 21 years,” he said.

The PTI chief said that if he had ambitions to become the prime minister, he would have joined politics in the early period of his life instead of playing cricket.

“I joined politics when I saw huge corruption in the country and I wished to raise the slogan of justice to make this country an Islamic welfare state. We want a state which was dreamed by Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah and Allama Muhammad Iqbal” he said.

Khan said that the International Monetary Fund has asked Finance Minister Ishaq Dar to impose Rs40 billion in new taxes on the people of Pakistan. “The country is at the mercy of these donor agencies,” he said. He said that if the government continued to borrow huge loans and implemented the IMF directives, how the Pakistani nation would afford expensive electricity and other expenditures.

He said that the cancer of corruption was hollowing the roots of the country and until its elimination, the PTI would continue their struggle. He said that the country was being looted by corrupt politicians and the poor masses bear the brunt.

The PTI said that he desired to see a corruption-free Pakistan and the day was not far when Pakistan would provide funds to other nations of the world.

He also praised the performance of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government and presented videos on multi-media showing how the province has transformed.

Khan said that the PTI government has planted 80 million trees in various parts of the province that will help withstand climate change onslaughts and protect soil erosion.

Shiekh Rashid said that the day was not far when Imran Khan will become the prime minister of Pakistan.

He asked PM Nawaz to come and observe the PTI rally whether it was a Jalsi or a Jalsa (a big gathering). He said that it was appearing that the prime minister will be disqualified in the light of the report of the newly formed joint investigation team.

Jehangir Tareen and Shah Mahmood also addressed the rally.