Once famous cricketer-turned-politician Imran Khan called for civil disobedience to force Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif to resign, multiple media reports say. Chairman of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf, the national Parliament’s third-largest political bloc, Khan told tens of thousands of demonstrators in Islamabad Sunday: “We will not pay tax and utility bills,” Gulf Today reported.
The daily newspaper based in the United Arab Emirates said Imran gave Sharif two days to step down, advising the prime minister, “Better go home quickly.” Protests in Pakistan’s capital this weekend were led by Khan and Tahir-ul-Qadri, chairman of Pakistan Awami Tehreek.
“We are giving 48 hours for the government to resign and dissolve the assemblies and present themselves before the law,” Reuters quoted Qadri as saying Saturday. Alleged voting fraud appears to be at the heart of the protests, the Associated Press said. The demonstrations have boosted concerns about Pakistan’s stability a year after Sharif took office following a landslide victory that marked the first democratic transfer of power in the history of the country, Reuters said.