Former Finance Minister Miftah Ismail has suggested that Ishaq Dar ran campaigns against him for more than six months before succeeding him as the country’s top finance chief.
Discussing the broader economy and politics in a YouTube podcast on Wednesday, Miftah finally shed light on his verbal spat with Dar since April 2022 and how party lines were breached to overthrow him.
In a podcast with Nadir Ali I mentioned Dar Sb’s relations with the party leadership, which has been a given a spin by the media. Upon reflection I regret doing so. I thank @fawadhasanpk and @SKhaqanAbbasi for pointing out my mistake. Here is the clip with the offending sentence. pic.twitter.com/IPO9zookGR
— Miftah Ismail (@MiftahIsmail) January 5, 2023
Miftah asserted that Dar is closer to Nawaz Sharif because his son is married to Nawaz’s daughter, and was with him in London. He said that Dar used to tell the PMLN chief that he would lower the dollar rate and petroleum prices when it wasn’t going to be that simple. He recalled how Dar requested prominent news anchors to tweet against him while he slowly built his own narrative by going on TV himself and claiming that he would bring the dollar rate down to Rs. 160.
Miftah also stated that Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif was pleased with his performance and did not wish to replace him. He claimed that during his tenure, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) agreement was restored, and default risk was reduced.
He went on to say that the manner in which he was removed lacked respect. Miftah claimed that Nawaz Sharif summoned him to London and informed him that he was being supplanted in front of 12 people.
In response to a question about Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) chief Imran Khan, Miftah said the ex-PM has no equal in terms of political strategy and narrative building but lacked policy-making skills.
For those who do not know, Dar and Miftah have been at each other’s throats since the former became finance minister in April last year. The quarrel first leaped dimensions a few months ago, when Miftah called out Dar for lowering petroleum prices and his stance on not hiking the Petroleum Development Levy (PDL) without IMF approval and termed it “reckless”.
Feeling attacked, Dar irritably responded to his PMLN counterpart that it was no longer Miftah’s concern to worry about the IMF. “I know how to deal with the IMF and no one has to worry about anything regarding it anymore,” said Dar said while responding to Miftah’s comment during a show on a private news channel.
Dar went on to say that he knew how to do it because he had solutions and had worked with the IMF for the previous 25 years.