PML-N senior leader Mian Javed Latif, who came under fire last month for issuing some controversial statements many deemed "anti-Pakistan," says that he stands by his words and would have retracted his statement had he been wrong.
Speaking to the media after a hearing related to the matter at the Lahore High Court where the petition filed against him was withdrawn and consequently disposed of by LHC's top judge Justice Mohammad Qasim Khan, Javed Latif said that resorting to criticism [for improving the country] is important.
"Saying Pakistan Zindabad is not patriotism. Mistakes made by people should be criticised and pointed out," he said.
Mian Javed Latif maintained that the "title of treason has been imposed on people for 73 years," adding that if he had to be hanged under such circumstances, he would not regret it.
"The [government] shouldn't make policies that create traitors. I stand by my position and if I had been wrong, I would have withdrawn my statement."
In response to the petition filed against him for making anti-state remarks, Mian Javed Latif had said that the accusations hurled against him were false and a "baseless case of treason was registered against me."
Court hearing against 'anti-state' remarks
The Chief Justice of Lahore High Court Muhammad Qasim Khan on Friday heard a petition against PML-N leader Mian Javed Latif over controversial, "anti-state" remarks he earlier made.
During the hearing, Justice Qasim Khan questioned the PML-N leader about his remarks, wondering whether they were patriotic or showing loyalty towards a personality.
"People will keep coming and going [to and from positions of authority]. This country is here to stay. If someone doesn't like Pakistan, they are free to leave," the chief justice said.
LHC's top judge added that he does not want to say anything against parliamentarians but if they have grievances, they should go to the police and get their statements recorded instead of coming to the court.
The apex court disposed of the petition as it was withdrawn.
Ministers attack PML-N's Javed Latif for 'Pakistan Khappay' statement
Last month, government functionaries had ashed out at Javed Latif for his statement which they termed anti-Pakistan.
Federal Minister for Maritime Affairs Ali Haider Zaidi, while taking to Twitter, on Saturday said: “This Maryam Safdar sycophant Javed Latif has the audacity to threaten to break up Pakistan. Any fool who places loyalty to a leader above loyalty to the country is a disgrace & should be dealt with accordingly.”
Special Assistant to Prime Minister of Pakistan on Political Communication Dr Shahbaz Gill said that there was no doubt that stolen money was dearer to the PML-N than Pakistan.
The SAPM said that it wasn’t beyond doubt that they (PML-N) built a new narrative after staging an incident.
He said that those who talk against the solidarity of the country would meet the same fate Altaf Hussain had met, adding that they should apologise for the barefaced statement.
Special Assistant to Chief Minister Punjab on Information Dr Firdous Ashiq Awan also criticised the MNA terming his statement shameless and mad, adding that he deserves punishment. She said that the lackey should not stoop so low that he finds it impossible to retract.
PML-N leader Mian Javed Latif, earlier, told a private TV channel that they would not chant Pakistan Khappay (long live Pakistan) if anything happened to the party’s Vice-President, Maryam Nawaz.
“It is the matter of a leader’s life,” Latif said.
“I am saying it beforehand when Benazir Bhutto realised the threats to her life, she took names and after that the tragedy took place.
“At that time, her heirs said Pakistan Khappay but if, God forbid, anything happened to Maryam Nawaz then we won’t raise the Pakistan Khappay slogan,” he said.
The remarks from the PML-N lawmaker came a day after former prime minister Nawaz Sharif said his daughter was receiving threats and that he would hold military leaders responsible if anything happened to her.