|Birth Day:||October 5, 1952|
|Birth Place:||Lahore, Pakistan|
Pakistani politician who founded Pakistan's Tehreek-e-Insaf party and became the 22nd Prime Minister in 2018. Imran Khan rose to prominence as his country's cricket captain and premier all-rounder, scoring over 3,500 runs and taking more than 350 wickets.
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Imran Khan's international cricket career spanned from 1971 to 1992, and he played a key role in Pakistan's 1992 World Cup victory.
Khan was born in Lahore on 5 October 1952. Some reports suggest he was born on 25 November 1952. It was reported that 25 November was wrongly mentioned by Pakistan Cricket Board officials on his passport. He is the only son of Ikramullah Khan Niazi, a civil engineer, and his wife Shaukat Khanum, and has four sisters. Long settled in Mianwali in northwestern Punjab, his paternal family are of Pashtun ethnicity and belong to the Niazi tribe, and one of his ancestors, Haibat Khan Niazi, in the 16th century, "was one of Sher Shah Suri's leading generals, as well as being the governor of Punjab." Khan's mother is Urdu-speaking, hailed from Karachi. which had produced several successful cricketers in Pakistan's history, including his cousins Javed Burki and Majid Khan. Maternally, Khan is also a descendant of the Sufi warrior-poet and inventor of the Pashto alphabet, Pir Roshan, who hailed from his maternal family's ancestral Kaniguram town located in South Waziristan in the tribal areas of northwest Pakistan. His maternal family was based in Basti Danishmanda, Jalandhar, India for about 600 years.
Imran Khan contested the general election from NA-35 (Bannu), NA-53 (Islamabad-II), NA-95 (Mianwali-I), NA-131 (Lahore-IX), and NA-243 (Karachi East-II). According to early, official results, Khan led the poll, although his opposition, mainly PML-N, alleged large-scale vote rigging and administrative malpractices. On 27 July, election officials declared that Khan's party had won 110 of the 269 seats, giving PTI a plurality in the National Assembly. At the conclusion of the count on 28 July, the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) announced that the PTI had won a total of 116 of the 270 seats contested. Khan became the first person in the history of Pakistan general elections who contested and won in all five constituencies, surpassing Zulfikar Ali Bhutto who contested in four but won in three constituencies in 1970.
Khan made his Test cricket debut against England in June 1971 at Edgbaston. Three years later, in August 1974, he debuted in the One Day International (ODI) match, once again playing against England at Trent Bridge for the Prudential Trophy. After graduating from Oxford and finishing his tenure at Worcestershire, he returned to Pakistan in 1976 and secured a permanent place on his native national team starting from the 1976–1977 season, during which they faced New Zealand and Australia. Following the Australian series, he toured the West Indies, where he met Tony Greig, who signed him up for Kerry Packer's World Series Cricket. His credentials as one of the fastest bowlers in the world started to become established when he finished third at 139.7 km/h in a fast bowling contest at Perth in 1978, behind Jeff Thomson and Michael Holding, but ahead of Dennis Lillee, Garth Le Roux and Andy Roberts. During the late 1970s, Khan was one of the pioneers of the reverse swing bowling technique. He imparted this trick to the bowling duo of Wasim Akram and Waqar Younis, who mastered and popularised this art in later years.
Khan publicly demanded a Pakistani apology towards the Bangladeshi people for the atrocities committed in 1971, He called the 1971 operation a "blunder" and likened it to today's treatment of Pashtuns in the war on terror. However, he repeatedly criticised the war crimes trials in Bangladesh in favour of the convicts. Khan is often mocked as "Taliban Khan" because of his pacifist stance regarding the war in North-West Pakistan. He believes in negotiations with Taliban and the pull out of the Pakistan Army from Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA). He is against US drone strikes and plans to disengage Pakistan from the US-led war on terror. Khan also opposes almost all military operations, including the Siege of Lal Masjid.
A quiet and shy boy in his youth, Khan grew up with his sisters in relatively affluent, upper middle-class circumstances and received a privileged education. He was educated at the Aitchison College and Cathedral School in Lahore, and then the Royal Grammar School Worcester in England, where he excelled at cricket. In 1972, he enrolled in Keble College, Oxford where he studied Philosophy, Politics and Economics, graduating in 1975.
As a fast bowler, Khan reached his peak in 1982. In 9 Tests, he took 62 wickets at 13.29 each, the lowest average of any bowler in Test history with at least 50 wickets in a calendar year. In January 1983, playing against India, he attained a Test bowling rating of 922 points. Although calculated retrospectively (International Cricket Council (ICC) player ratings did not exist at the time), Khan's form and performance during this period ranks third in the ICC's All-Time Test Bowling Rankings.
At the height of his career, in 1982, the thirty-year-old Khan took over the captaincy of the Pakistan cricket team from Javed Miandad. As a captain, Khan played 48 Test matches, of which 14 were won by Pakistan, 8 lost and the remaining 26 were drawn. He also played 139 ODIs, winning 77, losing 57 and ending one in a tie.
In the team's second match, Khan led them to their first Test win on English soil for 28 years at Lord's. Khan's first year as captain was the peak of his legacy as a fast bowler as well as an all-rounder. He recorded the best Test bowling of his career while taking 8 wickets for 58 runs against Sri Lanka at Lahore in 1981–1982. He also topped both the bowling and batting averages against England in three Test series in 1982, taking 21 wickets and averaging 56 with the bat. Later the same year, he put up a highly acknowledged performance in a home series against the formidable Indian team by taking 40 wickets in six Tests at an average of 13.95. By the end of this series in 1982–1983, Khan had taken 88 wickets in 13 Test matches over a period of one year as captain. This same Test series against India, however, also resulted in a stress fracture in his shin that kept him out of cricket for more than two years. An experimental treatment funded by the Pakistani government helped him recover by the end of 1984 and he made a successful comeback to international cricket in the latter part of the 1984–1985 season.
His first girlfriend, Emma Sergeant, an artist and the daughter of British investor Sir Patrick Sergeant, introduced him to socialites. They first met in 1982 and subsequently visited Pakistan. She accompanied him on various Pakistani cricket team tours including in Peshawar and Australian tour. After long separations, his relationship with Sergeant was broken in 1986. He then had a short relationship with Susie Murray-Philipson whom he invited to Pakistan and had dinner with in 1982. She also made various artistic portraits of Khan during their relationship.
In India in 1987, Khan led Pakistan in its first-ever Test series win and this was followed by Pakistan's first series victory in England during the same year. During the 1980s, his team also recorded three creditable draws against the West Indies. India and Pakistan co-hosted the 1987 Cricket World Cup, but neither ventured beyond the semi-finals. Khan retired from international cricket at the end of the World Cup. In 1988, he was asked to return to the captaincy by the President of Pakistan, General Zia-Ul-Haq, and on 18 January, he announced his decision to rejoin the team. Soon after returning to the captaincy, Khan led Pakistan to another winning tour in the West Indies, which he has recounted as "the last time I really bowled well". He was declared Man of the Series against West Indies in 1988 when he took 23 wickets in 3 Tests. Khan's career-high as a captain and cricketer came when he led Pakistan to victory in the 1992 Cricket World Cup. Playing with a brittle batting line-up, Khan promoted himself as a batsman to play in the top order along with Javed Miandad, but his contribution as a bowler was minimal. At the age of 39, Khan took the winning last wicket himself.
Khan was offered political position few times during his cricketing career. In 1987, then-President Muhammad Zia-ul-Haq offered him a political position in Pakistan Muslim League (PML) which he declined. He was also invited by Nawaz Sharif to join his political party.
His most well known relationship was with heiress Sita White, daughter of British industrialist Gordon White, Baron White of Hull. They remained in the relationship for about six years having met in 1987–88. According to Sita White, Khan agreed for a child in a 1991 meeting. Tyrian Jade was born on 15 June 1992 at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center but Khan, according to White's allegation, refused to accept her because she was a girl. Khan had urged White to go for an abortion. Tyrian looked extraordinarily like Khan. Later in 1997, Los Angeles court announced the verdict which was put by his former partner Sita White and her lawyer Gloria Allred that Imran Khan is the father of a five-year-old girl named Tyrian-Jade White. His former wife Reham Khan alleged Khan told her that Tyrian was not the only child fathered by him out of wedlock, there were four others, some of them had Indian mothers and the oldest of his children is 34 years old. In a later interview, Reham conceded that she did not know where these children were, who they were and whether Khan was only boasting about it, and said that she "didn't even know if it is true also because you can never make out whether he tells the truth." In 2004, after Sita's death, Khan agreed to accept Tyrian as his child and welcomed her to join their house.
Khan achieved the all-rounder's triple (securing 3000 runs and 300 wickets) in 75 Tests, the second-fastest record behind Ian Botham's 72. He also has the second-highest all-time batting average of 61.86 for a Test batsman playing at position 6 in the batting order. He played his last Test match for Pakistan in January 1992, against Sri Lanka at Faisalabad. Khan retired permanently from cricket six months after his last ODI, the historic 1992 World Cup final against England in Melbourne, Australia. He ended his career with 88 Test matches, 126 innings and scored 3807 runs at an average of 37.69, including six centuries and 18 fifties. His highest score was 136. As a bowler, he took 362 wickets in Test cricket, which made him the first Pakistani and world's fourth bowler to do so. In ODIs, he played 175 matches and scored 3709 runs at an average of 33.41. His highest score was 102 not out. His best ODI bowling was 6 wickets for 14 runs, a record for the best bowling figures by any bowler in an ODI innings in a losing cause.
1993 Khan was appointed as ambassador for tourism in the caretaker government of Moeen Qureshi and held the portfolio for three months until the government dissolved.
After retiring, he admitted to ball tampering in his youth, served as a domestic league coach, In 1994, Khan had admitted that, during Test matches, he "occasionally scratched the side of the ball and lifted the seam." He had also added, "Only once did I use an object. When Sussex were playing Hampshire in 1981 the ball was not deviating at all. I got the 12th man to bring out a bottle top and it started to move around a lot." In 1996, Khan successfully defended himself in a libel action brought forth by former English captain and all-rounder Ian Botham and batsman Allan Lamb over comments they alleged were made by Khan in two articles about the above-mentioned ball-tampering and another article published in an Indian magazine, India Today. They claimed that, in the latter publication, Khan had called the two cricketers "racist, ill-educated and lacking in class." Khan protested that he had been misquoted, saying that he was defending himself after having admitted that he tampered with a ball in a county match 18 years ago. Khan won the libel case, which the judge labelled a "complete exercise in futility", with a 10–2 majority decision by the jury.
In late 1994, he joined a pressure group led by former Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) chief Hamid Gul and Muhammad Ali Durrani who was head of Pasban, a breakaway youth wing of Jamaat-e-Islami Pakistan. The same year, he also showed his interest in joining politics.
On 16 May 1995, at the age of 43, Khan married 21-year-old Jemima Goldsmith, in a two-minute ceremony conducted in Urdu in Paris. A month later, on 21 June, they were married again in a civil ceremony at the Richmond registry office in England. Jemima converted to Islam. The couple have two sons, Sulaiman Isa and Kasim. On 22 June 2004, it was announced that the couple had divorced, ending the nine-year marriage because it was "difficult for Jemima to adapt to life in Pakistan".
On 25 April 1996, Khan founded a political party, Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI). He ran for the seat of National Assembly of Pakistan in 1997 Pakistani general election as a candidate of PTI from two constituencies – NA-53, Mianwali and NA-94, Lahore – but was unsuccessful and lost both the seats to candidates of PML (N).
Khan supported General Pervez Musharraf's military coup in 1999, believing Musharraf would "end corruption, clear out the political mafias". According to Khan, he was Musharraf's choice for prime minister in 2002 but turned down the offer. Khan participated in the October 2002 Pakistani general election that took place across 272 constituencies and was prepared to form a coalition if his party did not get a majority of the vote. He was elected from Mianwali. In the 2002 referendum, Khan supported military dictator General Musharraf, while all mainstream democratic parties declared that referendum as unconstitutional. He has also served as a part of the Standing Committees on Kashmir and Public Accounts. On 6 May 2005, Khan was mentioned in The New Yorker as being the "most directly responsible" for drawing attention in the Muslim world to the Newsweek story about the alleged desecration of the Qur'an in a US military prison at the Guantánamo Bay Naval Base in Cuba. In June 2007, Khan faced political opponents in and outside the parliament.
Since retiring, Khan has written opinion pieces on cricket for various British and Asian newspapers, especially regarding the Pakistani national team. His contributions have been published in India's Outlook magazine, Guardian, The Independent, and Telegraph. Khan also sometimes appears as a cricket commentator on Asian and British sports networks, including BBC Urdu and the Star TV network. In 2004, when the Indian cricket team toured Pakistan after 14 years, he was a commentator on TEN Sports' special live show, Straight Drive, while he was also a columnist for sify.com for the 2005 India-Pakistan Test series. He has provided analysis for every cricket World Cup since 1992, which includes providing match summaries for the BBC during the 1999 World Cup. He holds as a captain the world record for taking most wickets, best bowling strike rate and best bowling average in Test, and best bowling figures (8 wickets for 60 runs) in a Test innings, and also most five-wicket hauls (6) in a Test innings in wins.
On 23 November 2005, Khan was appointed as the chancellor of University of Bradford, succeeding Baroness Lockwood. On 26 February 2014, University of Bradford Union floated a motion to remove Khan from the post over Khan's absence from every graduation ceremony since 2010. Khan, however, announced that he will step down on 30 November 2014, citing his "increasing political commitments". The university vice-chancellor Brian Cantor said Khan had been "a wonderful role model for our students".
Declan Walsh in The Guardian newspaper in England in 2005 described Khan as a "miserable politician," observing that, "Khan's ideas and affiliations since entering politics in 1996 have swerved and skidded like a rickshaw in a rainshower... He preaches democracy one day but gives a vote to reactionary mullahs the next." Khan has also been accused by some opponents and critics of hypocrisy and opportunism, including what has been called his life's "playboy to puritan U-turn." Political commentator Najam Sethi, stated that, "A lot of the Imran Khan story is about backtracking on a lot of things he said earlier, which is why this doesn't inspire people." Author Fatima Bhutto has criticised Khan for "incredible coziness not with the military but with dictatorship" as well as some of his political decisions. Nevertheless, Khan's approval rating since he became Prime Minister remained comparatively robust for an officeholder in Pakistani politics with a majority approving (51%), compared to 46% disapproval and 3% undecided. While other polls suggested his approval was as high as 57%.
On 2 October 2007, as part of the All Parties Democratic Movement, Khan joined 85 other MPs to resign from Parliament in protest of the presidential election scheduled for 6 October, which general Musharraf was contesting without resigning as army chief. On 3 November 2007, Khan was put under house arrest, after president Musharraf declared a state of emergency in Pakistan. Later Khan escaped and went into hiding. He eventually came out of hiding on 14 November to join a student protest at the University of the Punjab. At the rally, Khan was captured by student activists from the Islami Jamiat-e-Talaba and roughly treated. He was arrested during the protest and was sent to the Dera Ghazi Khan jail in the Punjab province where he spent a few days before being released.
During the 1970s and 1980s, Khan was a popular sex symbol. He became known as a socialite in English high society, and sported a playboy image amongst the British press and paparazzi due to his "non-stop partying" at London nightclubs such as Annabel's and Tramp, though he claims to have hated English pubs and never drank alcohol. British heiress Sita White, daughter of Gordon White, Baron White of Hull, became the mother of his alleged lovechild daughter, Tyrian Jade White. A judge in the US ruled him to be the father of Tyrian, but Khan has denied paternity publicly. Later in 2007, Election Commission of Pakistan ruled in favour of Khan and dismissed the ex parte judgment of the US court, on grounds that it was neither admissible in evidence before any court or tribunal in Pakistan nor executable against him. About his lifestyle as a bachelor, he has often said that, "I never claim to have led an angelic life."
On 27 April 2008, Khan established a technical college in the Mianwali District called Namal College. It was built by the Mianwali Development Trust (MDT), and is an associate college of the University of Bradford in December 2005. Imran Khan Foundation is another welfare work, which aims to assist needy people all over Pakistan. It has provided help to flood victims in Pakistan. Buksh Foundation has partnered with the Imran Khan Foundation to light up villages in Dera Ghazi Khan, Mianwali and Dera Ismail Khan under the project 'Lighting a Million Lives'. The campaign will establish several Solar Charging Stations in the selected off-grid villages and will provide villagers with solar lanterns, which can be regularly charged at the solar-charging stations.
Khan has published six works of non-fiction, including an autobiography co-written with Patrick Murphy. He periodically writes editorials on cricket and Pakistani politics in several leading Pakistani and British newspapers. It was revealed in 2008 that Khan's second book, Indus Journey: A Personal View of Pakistan, had required heavy editing from the publisher. The publisher Jeremy Lewis revealed in a memoir that when he asked Khan to show his writing for publication, "He handed me a leatherbound notebook or diary containing a few jottings and autobiographical snippets. It took me, at most, five minutes to read them; and that, it soon became apparent, was all we had to go on."
In a book published in 2009, Christopher Sandford claimed that former Pakistani Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto and Imran Khan had a close relationship when both were students in Oxford. He wrote that Bhutto at the age of 21 first became close to Khan in 1975. They remained in a relationship for about two months. His mother also tried to have an arranged marriage between them. He further claimed that they had a "romantic relationship", which was refuted by Khan who said they were only friends.
Khan resides in his sprawling farmhouse at Bani Gala. In November 2009, Khan underwent emergency surgery at Lahore's Shaukat Khanum Cancer Hospital to remove an obstruction in his small intestine.
During his cricketing days, Khan featured in many advertisements and television commercials as a celebrity brand endorser. These included Pepsi Pakistan, Brooke Bond, Thums Up (along with Sunil Gavaskar), and the Indian soap brand Cinthol, at a time when Bollywood legend Vinod Khanna was also endorsing the same product. His popularity in India was such that it was "unmatched in an era when there were no smartphones to take selfies. He was mobbed everywhere he went." The late veteran Bollywood actor Dev Anand even offered him a role in his sports action-thriller movie Awwal Number (1990), that of a cricket star in decline opposite an upcoming cricketer essayed by Aamir Khan, and as he refused, citing his lack of acting skills, the role eventually went to Aditya Pancholi. In 2010, a Pakistani production house produced a biographical film based on Khan's life, titled Kaptaan: The Making of a Legend. The title, which is Urdu for 'Captain', depicts Khan's captaincy and career with the Pakistan cricket team which led them to victory in the 1992 cricket world cup, as well as events which shaped his life; from being ridiculed in cricket to being labelled a playboy; from the death of his mother to his efforts and endeavours in building the first cancer hospital in Pakistan; from being the first Chancellor of the University of Bradford to the building of Namal University.
On 30 October 2011, Khan addressed more than 100,000 supporters in Lahore, challenging the policies of the government, calling that new change a "tsunami" against the ruling parties, Another successful public gathering of hundreds of thousands of supporters was held in Karachi on 25 December 2011. Since then Khan became a real threat to the ruling parties and a future political prospect in Pakistan. According to an International Republican Institute's survey, Khan's Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf tops the list of popular parties in Pakistan both at the national and provincial level.
In August 2012, the Pakistani Taliban issued death threats if he went ahead with his march to their tribal stronghold along the Afghan border to protest US drone attacks, because he calls himself a "liberal" – a term they associate with a lack of religious belief. On 1 October 2012, prior to his plan to address a rally in South Waziristan, senior commanders of Pakistani Taliban said after a meeting headed by the Taliban leader Hakimullah Mehsud that they now offered Khan security assistance for the rally because of Khan's opposition to drone attacks in Pakistan, reversing their previous stance.
On 6 October 2012, Khan joined a vehicle caravan of protesters from Islamabad to the village of Kotai in Pakistan's South Waziristan region against US drone missile strikes. On 23 March 2013, Khan introduced the Naya Pakistan Resolution (New Pakistan) at the start of his election campaign. On 29 April The Observer termed Khan and his party Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf as the main opposition to the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz. Between 2011 and 2013, Khan and Nawaz Sharif began to engage each other in a bitter feud. The rivalry between the two leaders grew in late 2011 when Khan addressed his largest crowd at Minar-e-Pakistan in Lahore. From 26 April 2013, in the run up to the elections, both the PML-N and the PTI started to criticise each other.
In 2012, Khan had net worth of ₨22.9 million (US$140,000) which decreased to ₨14 million (US$84,000) in the election year 2013 and then gradually increased to ₨33.3 million (US$200,000) in 2014. In 2015 Khan's assets were valued ₨1.33 billion (US$8.0 million). As of 2017, his net worth is ₨1.4 billion (US$8.4 million).
After the May 2013 elections, Mohammed Hanif writing for The Guardian termed Khan's support as appealing "to the educated middle classes but Pakistan's main problem is that there aren't enough educated urban middle-class citizens in the country". Pankaj Mishra writing for The New York Times in 2012, charactised Khan as a "cogent picture out of his—and Pakistan's—clashing identities" adding that "his identification with the suffering masses and his attacks on his affluent, English-speaking peers have long been mocked in the living rooms of Lahore and Karachi as the hypocritical ravings of "Im the Dim" and "Taliban Khan"—the two favored monikers for him." Mishra concluded with "like all populist politicians, Khan appears to offer something to everyone. Yet the great differences between his constituencies—socially liberal, upper-middle-class Pakistanis and the deeply conservative residents of Pakistan's tribal areas—seem irreconcilable."
On 18 March 2012, Salman Rushdie criticised Khan for refusing to attend the India Today Conference because of Rushdie's attendance. Khan cited the "immeasurable hurt" that Rushdie's writings have caused Muslims around the world. Rushdie, in turn, suggested that Khan was a "dictator in waiting." In 2011, While writing for The Washington Post, Richard Leiby termed Khan as an underdog adding that he "often sounds like a pro-democracy liberal but is well known for his coziness with conservative Islamist parties." Ayesha Siddiqa, in September 2014, writing for The Express Tribune, claimed that "while we can all sympathise with Khan's right to change the political tone, it would be worthwhile for him to envision how he would, if he did become the prime minister of this country, put the genie back into the bottle." H. M. Naqvi termed Khan as a "sort of a Ron Paul figure", adding that "there is no taint of corruption and there is his anti-establishment message."
On 21 April 2013, Khan launched his final public relations campaign for the 2013 elections from Lahore where he addressed thousands of supporters at the Mall. Khan announced that he would pull Pakistan out of the US-led war on terror and bring peace to the Pashtun tribal belt. He addressed different public meetings in various cities of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and other parts of country where he announced that PTI will introduce a uniform education system in which the children of rich and poor will have equal opportunities. Khan ended his south Punjab campaign by addressing rallies in various Seraiki belt cities.
Khan ended the campaign by addressing a rally of supporters in Islamabad via a video link while lying on a bed at a hospital in Lahore. The last survey before the elections by The Herald showed 24.98 percent of voters nationally planned to vote for his party, just a whisker behind former prime minister Nawaz Sharif's PML-N. On 7 May, just four days before the elections, Khan was rushed to Shaukat Khanum hospital in Lahore after he tumbled from a forklift at the edge of a stage and fell headfirst to the ground. Pakistan's 2013 elections were held on 11 May 2013 throughout the country. The elections resulted in a clear majority of Pakistan Muslim League (N). Khan's PTI emerged as the second largest party by popular vote nationally including in Karachi. Khan's party PTI won 30 directly elected parliamentary seats and became third largest party in National Assembly behind Pakistan People's Party, which was second.
Khan led Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf became the opposition party in Punjab and Sindh. Khan became the parliamentary leader of his party. On 31 July 2013 Khan was issued a contempt of court notice for allegedly criticising the superior judiciary, and his use of the word shameful for the judiciary. The notice was discharged after Khan submitted before the Supreme Court that he criticised the lower judiciary for their actions during the May 2013 general election while those judicial officers were working as returning officers. Khan's party swooped the militancy-hit northwestern Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KPK), and formed the provincial government. PTI-led Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government presented a balanced, tax-free budget for the fiscal year 2013–14.
On 13 November 2013, Khan, being party leader, ordered Pervez Khattak to dismiss ministers of Qaumi Watan Party (QWP) who were allegedly involved in corruption. Bakht Baidar and Ibrar Hussan Kamoli of Qaumi Watan Party, ministers for Manpower & Industry and Forest & Environment respectively, were dismissed. Khan ordered Chief Minister KPK to end the alliance with QWP. Chief Minister KPK also dismissed Minister for Communication and Works of PTI Yousuf Ayub Khan due to a fake degree.
In 2014, when Pakistani Taliban announced armed struggle against Ismaili Muslims (denouncing them as non-Muslims) and the Kalash people, Khan released a statement describing "forced conversions as un-Islamic". He has also condemned the incidents of forced conversion of Hindu girls in Sindh. Khan views the Kashmir issue as a humanitarian issue, as opposed to a territorial dispute between two countries (India and Pakistan). He also proposed secret talks to settle the issue as he thinks the vested interests on both sides will try to subvert them. He ruled out a military solution to the conflict and denied the possibility of a fourth war between India and Pakistan over the disputed mountainous region.
A year after elections, on 11 May 2014, Khan alleged that 2013 general elections were rigged in favour of the ruling PML (N). On 14 August 2014, Imran Khan led a rally of supporters from Lahore to Islamabad, demanding Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif's resignation and investigation into alleged electoral fraud. On its way to the capital Khan's convoy was attacked by stones from PML (N) supporters in Gujranwala; however, there were no fatalities. Khan was reported to be attacked with guns which forced him to travel in a bullet-proof vehicle. On 15 August, Khan-led protesters entered the capital and a few days later marched into the high-security Red Zone; on 1 September 2014, according to Al Jazeera, protesters attempted to storm Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif's official residence, which prompted the outbreak of violence. Three people died and more than 595 people were injured, including 115 police officers. Prior to the violence that resulted in deaths, Khan asked his followers to take law into their own hands.
On 8 January 2015, Khan visited the embassies of Iran and Saudi Arabia in Islamabad and met their head of commissions to understand their stances about the conflict which engulfed both nations after the execution of Sheikh Nimr by Saudi Arabia. He urged the Government of Pakistan to play a positive role to resolve the matter between both countries. After parliament passed a unanimous resolution keeping Pakistan out of the War in Yemen in April 2015, Khan claimed that his party was responsible for "many critical clauses" of the resolution. In July 2018, the Saudi-based Islamic Development Bank activated its $4.5 billion oil financing facility for Pakistan.
In January 2015, it was announced that Khan married British-Pakistani journalist Reham Khan in a private Nikah ceremony at his residence in Islamabad. However, Reham Khan later states in her autobiography that they in fact got married in October 2014 but the announcement only came in January the year after. On 22 October, they announced their intention to file for divorce.
In July 2017, Federal Board of Revenue Pakistan revealed the tax directory of Pakistani MP's. According to FBR, Khan paid ₨76,200 (US$460) of tax in 2015 and ₨1.59 lakh (US$960) in 2016.
On 1 August 2017, Ayesha Gulalai came forward with allegations of harassment against Khan and claimed that she had been receiving offensive messages from him since October 2013. In an interview, Khan said that he suspected that the Pakistan Muslim League (Nawaz) had used Gulalai for the allegations of harassment against him. Later, Ayesha Gulalai said that she will forgive Khan if he apologises.
In May 2018, Khan's party announced a 100-day agenda for a possible future government. The agenda included sweeping reforms in almost all areas of government including creation of a new province in Southern Punjab, fast tracking of merger of Federally Administered Tribal Areas into Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, betterment of law and order situation in Karachi, and betterment of relations with Baloch political leaders.
On 6 August 2018, PTI officially nominated him as the candidate for prime minister. Delivering a speech during his nomination, he said that he will present himself for public accountability for an hour every week in which he will answer questions put forward by masses.
On 17 August 2018, Khan secured 176 votes and became 22nd Prime Minister of Pakistan and took oath of office on 18 August 2018. Khan ordered top level reshuffling in the country's bureaucracy, including the appointment of Sohail Mahmood as Foreign Secretary, Rizwan Ahmed as Maritime Secretary and Naveed Kamran Baloch as Finance Secretary. His first major appointment in the Pakistan Army was that of Lieutenant General Asim Munir to the key slot of Director-General of Inter-Services Intelligence.
In domestic economic policy, Khan inherited a twin balance of payments and debt crisis with a large current account deficit and fiscal deficit in 2018, Khan's government sought a bailout from the IMF. In exchange for the bailout, Khan's government slashed subsidy spending in the energy sector and unveiled an austerity budget to curb the fiscal deficit and limit government borrowing. Also, the IMF demanded that the Pakistani government depreciate the rupee, and improve tax collection. Khan's government decided to raise import tariffs to collect higher tax revenues and devalued the currency, this alongside the heavy import duty helped to curtail the current account deficit (see import substitution). Pakistan's overall balance of payment's position improved significantly following record high remittances in 2020, which stabilised the central bank's foreign exchange reserves. The fiscal deficit narrowed to less than 1% of GDP by 2020 due to the government's austerity policies. Thus the rate of debt accumulation had significantly slowed, but Pakistan's debt remained high due to high borrowing of previous governments in which the current government had to allocate $24 billion to pay off loans taken during tenure of previous governments.
In June 2018 prior to Khan's election - the FATF (Financial Action Task Force) placed Pakistan on a grey list and demanded a series of actions be taken by Pakistan to remedy terror financing laws. Khan's government had initially used constitutional provisions of Presidential power held by Arif Alvi to issue ordinances (temporary legislation via Presidential decree) and the country became compliant with 14 points on the FATF agenda. Subsequently, a series of bills were presented in Pakistan's parliament to ensure the legislation would permanently remain in place beyond a temporary Presidential decree. Minor parts of the legislation passed both the lower house and upper house of Pakistan's parliament with support of Khan's ruling coalition and part of the opposition parties too. However, the opposition dominated Senate did not pass a significant portion of the FATF bills. Subsequently, Khan summoned a joint-session of both upper and lower house of parliament in which the bills passed given the government held a majority and without the support of the opposition.
In mid-2016, late 2017 and early 2018, reports emerged that Khan had married his spiritual mentor (murshid), Bushra Bibi. Khan, PTI aides and members of the Manika family denied the rumour. Khan termed the media "unethical" for spreading the rumour, and PTI filed a complaint against the news channels that had aired it. On 7 January 2018, however, the PTI central secretariat issued a statement that said Khan had proposed to Manika, but she had not yet accepted his proposal. On 18 February 2018, PTI confirmed Khan has married Manika. According to Khan, his life has been influenced by Sufism for three decades, and this is what drew him closer to his wife.
Khan announced his cabinet soon after taking oath, choosing to keep the Ministry of Interior to himself. Though he later appointed Ijaz Ahmed Shah as interior minister. Many of his appointees were previously ministers during Musharraf era, although some were defectors from the left-wing People's Party. In 2019 Khan committed to a major cabinet reshuffle in the ministries of interior, finance, information and planning.
In foreign policy, Khan voiced support for the 2019 Turkish offensive into north-eastern Syria. On 11 October 2019, Khan told the Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdoğan that "Pakistan fully understands Turkey's concerns relating to terrorism". Khan's foreign policy towards neighbouring Afghanistan consists primarily of support for the Afghan peace process and also inaugurated a 24/7 border crossing with Afghanistan to facilitate travel and trade. He said that Pakistan will never recognize Israel until a Palestinian state is created, a statement in line with the vision of Pakistan's founder Muhammad Ali Jinnah.
Aside from IMF mandated reforms, Khan's government introduced policies to improve the business operating climate. As a result, Pakistan climbed 28 places higher on the World Bank's ease of doing business index. As Pakistan ranked amongst the top 10 most improved countries in 2019. Pakistan's tax collection also hit record highs in 2019. As the government raised more revenue from domestic taxes with no increase in tax revenue from import taxes (given import compression had lowered the quantity being imported so the government collected less tax revenue from imports). This trend continued into 2020, albeit at a slower pace. The fiscal deficit was also controlled to less than 1% of GDP in the second half of 2020, Pakistan recorded a primary surplus (excluding interest payment and principal repayment of previous debt), but was in deficit once the interest payment on debt was accounted for, albeit the deficit was smaller. Economists primarily pinned this reduction in the fiscal deficit on an increase in non-tax revenues rather than increase in tax revenues. For example, from the higher prices consumers paid for oil from state-owned oil companies. Nevertheless, tax revenues also went on an upward trajectory with Pakistan's tax agency (FBR) both exceeding its tax collection target and collecting a record amount for the first quarter of the fiscal year 2021 in calendar year 2020.
During the 2020 coronavirus pandemic, Khan's government rolled out the largest welfare programme in Pakistan's history, with a fund of almost $1 billion aimed at the country's poorest segment of the population. The PM's advisor Dr. Sania Nishtar confirmed that the programme would use pre-existing data of other welfare programmes under 'Ehsaas' system and the much smaller Benazir Income Support Programme which provided a more limited safety-net, while the Ehsaas programme targeted lower-income households more broadly. Following a drop in COVID-19 cases, declining positivity rates and falling hospitalisations, Khan's government lifted lockdown restrictions. Economically, a V-shaped recovery was observed in both business confidence and expected employment index. The current account was in surplus for 3 out of 4 months after June 2020 although this was due to higher remittances (which tend to be volatile) offsetting decrease in exports.
In 2020, Khan's government commenced building work for the Diamer-Bhasha Dam, as part of his government's investment in renewable energy projects. The World Bank loaned Pakistan $450mn for investment in renewable energy projects as part of the government's stated aim of making Pakistan a renewable-energy reliant economy and reducing greenhouse gas emissions to combat climate change.
In October 2020, Imran Khan voiced out about the growing extremism and violence against Islam, across the world. In a letter posted on Twitter, he urged Facebook’s CEO Mark Zuckerberg to ban Islamophobic content on its platform.
On 25 June 2020, Khan received widespread criticism, both in the international press and from the domestic opposition, for calling al-Qaeda founder and 9/11 mastermind Osama bin Laden a 'martyr', connoting a sense of heroism and nobility in his death. Khan, on a previous occasion during a local television interview, had refused to call bin Laden a terrorist. A spokesman for Khan stated that any controversy around Khan's remarks was "unwarranted".
Currently, Imran Khan is 68 years, 9 months and 23 days old. Imran Khan will celebrate 69th birthday on a Tuesday 5th of October 2021.
Find out about Imran Khan birthday activities in timeline view here.