ISLAMABAD: Disgruntled Pakistan Tehrik-e-Insaf leader Justice (retd) Wajiuddin Ahmed claims that some elements want to destroy Imran Khan’s family life and spoil his public image. “Some outside elements are conspiring to bring a bad name to Imran and disturb his family life. They are the ones who are speaking of differences between Imran and (his wife) Reham Khan . At the same time some inside (PTI) elements are also defaming the party,” said the PTI leader, known as Mr Clean.

“I still have good relations with Imran and I am sure nothing is going on between him and Reham. This is the handiwork of some people who want to ditch Imran,” he remarked. Last month Imran sent his ambitious wife into political hibernation asking her to remain out of the PTI affairs. And this month, there were media reports the two were struggling to keep the marriage intact and may have already reached the ‘point of no return.’ “I feel they are okay at the moment. If they had any problems, I would have known,” Waji told The Nation.

The veteran leader said he does not have any differences with Imran but was worried about the ‘crowd of 2011’ who was derailing the party. “The ideological workers (ostensibly led by him) accept Imran as their leader and want the party to keep its ideology intact. That is the only issue we have,” he added. Justice Waji said people like Jehangir Tareen, Nadir Leghari, Aleem Khan and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Chief Minister Pervez Khattak had joined the party when it was riding high on popularity. “We are not saying to just throw them out of the PTI. We want accountability and appointments to the key posts on merit,” he added. Asked if he was in contact with Imran, Waji said: “We have good relations but these days he is out of contact. This does not mean we have any issues.”

He said the supporters of the ‘crowd of 2011’ believe the party needs such people to progress. “I differ on this. If these types of people are behind success, why did the party become popular before them? We have to do the politics of principles and ideology. There will be no difference between us and the other parties if we run after rich and influential people,” Waji contended. He recalled that as election tribunal head of the PTI, he had found several people including Tareen and Khattak involved in irregularities. “I don’t say to kick them out but at least this should have been investigated. We should hold elections and should not go for selection,” he argued. Waji said the PTI could challenge the Pakistan Muslim League (Nawaz) and the Pakistan People’s Party in the next polls and the upcoming Local governments elections.

“We must bring the ideological workers on the forefront to be able to make a difference,” he suggested. Recently, Imran had suspended the party membership of Waji for violating a notification from the PTI leadership warning members against publicly criticising party policies. The former Supreme Court judge had been at loggerheads with the party’s top leadership and had criticised them for not taking measures to address the allegations of irregularities in the intra-party polls. Another PTI leader said the plot to upset Imran’s family life was being hatched by the people who cannot face him in the elections.

“They want to tease him mentally to curtail his activities. These people must prove their popularity by defeating PTI in elections,” the lawmaker asserted. He said that Imran and Reham were leading a happy married life and the PTI chief was busy in mobilising the party for the by-elections. “There is a lot of work on the table so we won’t take these rumours seriously. The party is also trying to resolve the reservations of the dissidents,” the legislator said.