Imran Khan

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Khan in 2019
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Adolf Hitler and Napoleon Bonaparte would not have suffered losses in wars in Russia if they had taken U-turns. Leaders should always be ready to take U-turns according to the requirement of their duties and best interests of the nation. One who doesn’t take decisions according to the demand of the situation is not a true leader.
—Imran Khan trying to justify his broken campaign promises, November 2018[1]

Imran Khan (5 October 1952–) was a professional cricket player before entering politics. He served as the 22nd Prime Minister of Pakistan (18 August 2018 through 10 April 2022) and Leader of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI), a political party that he created.

His ascendancy to premiership set a record for 3rd consecutive civilian administration in the short history of Pakistan, which has been dominated by military rule.

Even though he might seem like a fresh face in Pakistani politics, his administration was filled with traditional establishment leaders.

On April 10, 2022, Khan lost a confidence vote and was removed from office.[2] A few months later he was banned from holding public office, resulting in him losing his seat in the National Assembly. [3] Khan remains popular in Pakistan, with polls suggesting his party would win the next election.

Domestic policy[edit]

First 100 days of premiership[edit]

Khan made a big deal out of what he'd do just within the first 100 days of him taking office.[4] Of course after becoming Prime Minister, his first 100 days were same as Nawaz Sharif's first 100 days, if not worse. [5]

Establishment figures[edit]

We will run Pakistan like it has never been run before,
—Poor Khan, not knowing about his future cabinet[6]

Here are some old figures that Khan used to speak against when they were in other parties, now that they have joined PTI, their misbehaviors are now the opposition's propaganda.[7]

  1. Shah Mehmood Qureshi, as Minister for Foreign Affairs.
  2. Ijaz Ahmed Shah, as Minister for Interior. [8]
  3. Pervez Khattak, as Minister for Defence.
  4. Asad Umer, as Minister of Planning, Development, Reforms and Special Initiatives. He used to be the Finance Minister, but was fired.
  5. Omar Ayub Khan, as Energy Minister. He's Grandson of Pakistan's first dictator, General Ayub Khan.
  6. Fawad Chaudhry, as Minister for Science and Technology.
  7. Muhammad Mian Soomro, as Minister for Privatisation.

All of these have worked for either Pervez Musharraf, Asif Zardari, or Nawaz Sharif, basically these lackeys remain in power no matter who's at the top.[9]

Some of them are outright ex-military officials or their family members, which screams establishment.

Foreign policy[edit]

Kashmir and hypocrisy[edit]

And I again repeat, China has come to our help when we were right at the rock bottom. So I would not publicly talk about it,
—Imran Khan [10][11]

Khan has repeatedly called out the Indian government for their actions against Muslims in Kashmir. While this is true and should be called out, Khan does not feel the same way for Uighur Muslims in Chinese concentration camps.[12]

Kashmir is repeatedly used by subsequent governments in Pakistan to deflect from actual domestic issues.

Saudi Arabia[edit]

Khan with Muhammad Bin Salman in 2019

Saudi Arabia has always had close relationship with Pakistan. In a visit from Saudi Prince Mohammad bin Salman, Khan personally gave him a ride. This visit resulted in $10 billion investments for a refinery and petrochemical complex in Gwadar.[13]

After Khan's foreign minister gave a flaring speech against Riyadh's non-action regarding the Kashmir dispute, Saudi Arabia pulled its support.[14] Pakistan then decided to send its leader (The Chief of Army Staff) to Saudi Arabia.[15]


PM Imran Khan in Tehran

Khan has been vocal against US sanctions on Iran since the early days of his campaign. [16][17]

He also wants to play the role of mediator between Saudi Arabia and Iran.[18]


China is developing trains which will be faster than the speed of light
—Imran Khan has high hopes [19]

In his victory speech, Khan praised China and said he would seek to further strengthen their relations; he also highlighted the importance of the CPEC (China–Pakistan Economic Corridor) projects.[20]

He formally met with President Xi Jinping in October of 2019.[21]

United States[edit]

At the White House

The United States and Pakistan have had rocky relations in the past. Imran Khan has also shown his views against foreign aid.[22]

Khan met with President Trump on 21 July 2019 in the White House. The leaders decided to "reset" their relationship with each other. Trump brought up the role of Pakistan in the Afghanistan War, and a possible peace process.

Khan in June 2020 suggested that Osama Bin Laden was a martyr.[23] One of his cabinet lackeys said that this was a "slip of tongue".[24]

In March 2022, Khan accused the United States of colluding with Pakistani MPs and the military to oust him from office, citing his past criticisms of US foreign policy as their motivations.[25] The US denied the claims.


After winning the election in 2018, the speech that Khan gave involved improving relations with India and to establish good trade agreements.[26]

From 14 February 2019 to 22 March 2019 a number of border skirmishes occurred between the two countries. This all started when 40 security personnel died on the Indian side by a suicide car bombing plotted by the Pakistan-based Islamic militant group known as Jaish-e-Mohammad.Wikipedia[27] On 22 March Pakistan and India jointly accepted a peace agreement.[28]

In November 2019, one great policy step taken by Khan's government was to open a visa-free border crossing for the Sikh community, this is known as the Kartarpur Corridor.Wikipedia[29] Indian PM Narendra Modi compared this event to the fall of Berlin Wall.[30] Khan said,

Pakistan is not only opening the border but also their hearts for the Sikh community.[31]

Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf[edit]

Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf

The PTI (Pakistan Movement for Justice) was founded in 1996 by Imran Khan, who had recently retired from international cricket. Since inception, the slogan has been of forming a "New Pakistan".

Political positions[edit]

The party's ideology can be defined as economic reform and Social conservatism. It was started on the grounds of being anti-status quo and on the promise of an Islamic welfare state.

Electoral history[edit]

Election Votes Percentage Seats
1997 General Election 314,820 1.7% 0
2002 General Election 242,472 0.83% 1
2008 General Election Boycotted [32] - -
2013 General Election 7,679,954 16.92% 35
2018 General Election 16,903,702 31.82% 149

Source: ECP

2018 victory[edit]

Khan taking orders from the real boss

Imran Khan came into power after a long struggle, but this victory came at the cost of embracing certain establishment figures. Also, other popular figures like Nawaz Sharif of PML(N) were conveniently excluded by the supreme court.[33]

Khan's wife Bushra Imran wore a burqa in public during his term, leading to mixed opinions. [34]

Broken promises[edit]

The Government has done a complete 180° turn on numerous campaign promises. These are known as U-turns in Pakistani media.

The leader who does not do timely U-turns is not a real leader,
—Imran Khan, November 2018[35]
  • Khan used to say "I would rather commit suicide before approaching IMF". He reached a $6 billion bailout agreement with the IMF in 2019.[36][37]
  • During the Pakistan People's Party's (PPP) tenure (2008-2013), Khan used to call them out on financial corruption. Now he has reappointed the finance minister of that period to his current cabinet.[38]
  • Khan promised citizenship for Pakistani-born Afghanis and Bengalis, but he soon backed out of it. [39]
  • When General Pervez Musharraf was in power, Imran Khan used to call for him to resign and was against his dictatorship.[40] Now Khan's government has decided to defend Musharraf in a high-treason case.[41]


  2. Pakistan Parliament Ousts Imran Khan as Prime Minister. The New York Times. 9 April 2022.