Islamabad -  A ‘ghost’ which haunts Pakistan has led to the ouster of Nawaz Sharif, PML-N leader and Senator Pervaiz Rashid said in an interview with a private TV channel on Friday.

Pervaiz Rashid, who was removed after an inquiry into the Dawn story case, said this while responding to a question on whether Sharif’s ouster was the outcome of a conspiracy. “It (ghost) is present in politicians, political minds, and some institutions,” he said, refusing to name any institution but naming the ghost after the former president and military ruler Pervez Musharraf.

Pervaiz Rashid said he was targeting “a particular mindset which needs to change for Pakistan to prosper.” He also accused Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) of being “a mere pawn to the said mindset, without dwelling on what it entails”.

“Whenever the prime ministers were sent home before this (Nawaz’s recent disqualification), people wouldn’t even remember their names in the next few months,” he said, adding that, however, there was an immediate public response when Nawaz was deposed.

“Decisions have been taken against us while ‘the interior’ [minister] existed, JITs have been created and ‘whatsapps’ have also happened while ‘the interior’ was there,” he said, in an apparent controversial statement likely aimed at former interior minister Chaudhry Nisar.

NISAR CONFRONTS PERVAIZ OVER HIS REMARKS

The statement by Pervaiz Rashid prompted the former interior minister to issue a strongly-worded response. “Don’t know why some people put the blame of their faults on the interior ministry. It seems that they are obsessed with the interior ministry and the former interior minister,” Chaudhary Nisar was quoted as saying by his spokesperson.

In a statement issued through his spokesperson, Nisar said that Rashid should have elaborated that what type of help he was expecting from the interior ministry.

Rashid avoided answering exactly why he was removed from his office but said that his sacrifice was for democracy. “If I had to sacrifice myself for democracy, I was happy to do it. My prime minister (Nawaz Sharif) also believes in the same ideology which is why he acted with restraint.”